Man holding a measurement tape

Research has already shown that GLP-1 receptor agonists, such as Byetta and Victoza, are effective at achieving weight loss and improving blood glucose levels, but now researchers have found a combination that could outperform the drugs that are currently available.

The three hormones target the receptors of GLP-1 (glucagon-like peptide-1), GIP (gastric inhibitory polypeptide) and glucagon. GLP-1 and GIP both help to regulate digestion, reduce appetite and induce the release of insulin. Glucagon is the hormone which helps to raise blood glucose levels but has potential to help the liver and reduce the production of body fat.

30% decrease in body weight

The research has been carried out by researchers from the Helmholtz Diabetes Center at the Technical University of Munich and Indiana University. The hormone combination has so far been tested in rodents and delivered impressive results.

The results showed that doses of the three hormone receptor agonists reduced body weight by around 30 percent in the animals tested. In addition to the effects on body weight, the combo drug showed additional benefits in reducing blood glucose and cholesterol levels and reducing fat storage in the liver.

The study delivers a lot of promise but the research is at an early stage and further studies will be required to assess safety and whether the treatment shows similar effectiveness to the effects observed in the rodents.