Onglyza (saxagliptin) belongs to drug class dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) inhibitor; it was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on July 31, 2009. The drug was initially developed by Bristol-Myers Squibb; this was followed by AstraZeneca joining with Bristol-Myers Squibb in 2007 to co-develop the product and collaborating on the marketing front as well. Onglyza is prescribed for the treatment of Type-2 diabetes to be used along with diet and exercise to lower blood sugar in adults. Saxagliptin helps the pancreas to secrete more insulin and stops the liver from making excess sugar. Onglyza effectively controls the blood sugar without causing any weight fluctuations.
Saxagliptin is not used to treat type 1 diabetes (condition in which the body does not produce insulin which results in uncontrolled sugar amount in the blood not ) or diabetic ketoacidosis (a serious condition that may develop if high blood sugar is not treated). The doctor may want the patient to stop taking saxagliptin for a short time if they become ill, have a fever or infection, or if they have surgery or a medical emergency. Saxagliptin is only part of a complete program of treatment that also includes diet, exercise, weight control, and possibly other medications. It comes in the form of a tablet to take by mouth. Onglyza is supplied as a 5 mg and 2.5 mg tablet designed for oral administration. It is usually taken once a day with or without food.
D-PP4 inhibitors are a class of compounds that work by affecting the action of natural hormones in the body called incretins. Incretins decrease blood sugar by increasing consumption of sugar by the body, mainly through increasing insulin production in the pancreas, and by reducing production of sugar by the liver. Although Saxagliptin controls type 2 diabetes, it does not cure it. The physician is also to be informed in case the patient suffers from kidney disease or is on dialysis.
Studies conducted showed that people on Onglyza medication had a higher risk of pancreatic cancer and increased risk of hospitalization due to heart failure; thus, the medication has ended up causing more harm than benefit to diabetic patients.