Diabetes Drugs: Sulfonylureas

Sulfonylureas among were the first oral medicines available for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes. They were discovered by accident in France by a researcher who was working on drugs for typhoid fever. Animals that were given sulfounylureas displayed unusual behaviors and were found to have hypoglycemia (low blood glucose). It was quickly recognized that these drugs could be used for the treatment of diabetes... Read More

Diabetes Drugs: GLP-1 Agonists

A curious fact that has been known almost since the discovery of insulin is that glucose taken by mouth stimulates insulin secretion to a greater degree than glucose that is injected straight into the bloodstream. Researchers theorized that a hormone might be released by the gastrointestinal tract in response to glucose that was able to stimulate insulin secretion above and beyond that stimulated by glucose alone. This then-undiscovered hormone was called "incretin," since it seemed to stimulate insulin production... Read More

Diabetes Drugs: Thiazolidinediones

This class of drugs was introduced into practice over a decade ago, but the first thiazolidinedione turned out to be associated with severe side effects. The drug, named troglitazone (brand name Rezulin), was introduced into the United States in 1997 and removed from clinical use 3 years later due to concerns about liver damage... Read More

Diabetes Drugs: Metformin

Metformin (brand names Glucophage, Glucophage XR, Riomet, Fortamet, Glumetza) is a member of a class of medicines known as biguanides. This type of medicine was first introduced into clinical practice in the 1950's with a drug called phenformin. Unfortunately, phenformin was found to be associated with lactic acidosis, a serious and often fatal condition, and was removed from the U.S. market in 1977... Read More