Geneva – 19 January 2015 – The World Health Organization (WHO) announced its first target in addressing the burden of noncommunicable diseases (NCD’s) is to lower the risk of death from diabetes and other diseases by 25% within ten years. The WHO estimated that 9% of the world population (630 million people) suffers from diabetes.
The announcements were made as part of the 2014 Global status report on noncommunicable diseases [http://www.who.int/entity/nmh/publications/ncd-status-report-2014/en/index.html] which urged governments to take action in order to prevent the annual toll of 16 million deaths from diabetes, heart and lung diseases, stroke and cancer.
Government policies are capable of significantly reducing premature NCD deaths by reducing tobacco use, unhealthy diets and physical inactivity, and delivering universal health care. An estimated annual investment of $11.2 billion could prevent economic losses estimated at $7 trillion.
WHO Global Target: halt the rise in diabetes and obesity
“According to the report, the diabetes pandemic accounted for 1.5 million deaths in 2012 and 89 million DALYs,” says Dr. Mateusz Zelewski, CEO of MetaCure. “The increasing burden is driven by the effects of population ageing as well as the rising levels of obesity and inactivity. Knowledge and technologies we already possess can help alleviate some of this burden, particularly in countries where healthcare systems are lagging behind best practices in management of diabetes.”
Today’s solutions are not enough though, explains Professor Lebovitz from the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism/Diabetes at the State University of New York, Brooklyn. “Insulin treatment has the potential to reduce HbA1c to target levels. However it comes with potentially significant side effects. Patients under insulin treatment see a progressive rise in body weight, body fat and blood pressure. They also have a heightened risk of hospitalization for hypoglycemic reactions and they are required to measure blood glucose and inject insulin several times a day. The complications, the side effects and the inevitable impact on their life leads to a low compliance rate and increased disease management costs.”
MetaCure makes the DIAMOND system, which is intended to treat obese type 2 diabetes patients for whom oral medication is insufficient. “The DIAMOND is a new alternative to insulin which is as effective as insulin but associated with far less complications. Studies have shown that DIAMOND therapy reduces HbA1c by around 1.0% to 1.5%,” says Dr. Zelewski. “We invested many years in developing a cost-effective solution which we expect will contribute immensely to the global mission to stop diabetes and lower the associated risks.”
About type 2 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is a metabolic disorder characterized by hyperglycemia resulting from inadequate insulin secretion or insulin resistance. The most common form of diabetes, it represents 90% of all cases. Often referred to as a pandemic, it is estimated that over 400 million people worldwide are affected by diabetes, with management costs exceeding $800 billion annually.
About DIAMOND therapy
DIAMOND therapy is delivered via an implantable medical device which has the potential to be used as an alternative to insulin. The safety and efficacy of DIAMOND therapy have been validated in clinical trials involving over 300 patients, including a pilot study which demonstrated a comparable effectiveness to insulin treatment, but avoiding many side-effects and the inconvenience of frequent blood tests and injections. Designed to treat type 2 diabetes in obese patients who are refractory to oral medication, DIAMOND therapy is delivered via a small pacemaker-like device implanted in the abdomen, which delivers electrical signals to the stomach when eating, improving glycemic control and promoting weight loss. DIAMOND has received CE mark and is approved for sale in Europe, Australia and other international markets; it is currently not approved for use in the USA. For more information, visit www.MetaCure.com/DIAMOND.
MetaCure, a member of the Hobart Group companies, aims to provide a better way to manage type 2 diabetes, focusing on the impact on the day-to-day lives of patients. It develops, produces and markets the DIAMOND therapy, an alternative to insulin delivered via a proprietary implantable device. For more information, visit MetaCure.com.
About Hobart Group
The Hobart Group develops and commercializes medical technologies which target top healthcare markets with significant unmet needs. Its growing portfolio of companies covers the areas of cardiology, diabetes, oncology, neurology and rehabilitation. Together, Hobart Group companies have over 200 scientists, engineers, regulatory and business experts across four continents, benefitting from clinical expertise and extensive regulatory and international market knowledge across Europe, the USA and Asia. For more information, visit www.Hobart-Group.com.