Liraglutide Linked to Weight Loss, Improved Metabolic Control

(HealthDay News) — A once-daily dose of liraglutide 3.0 mg, injected subcutaneously, is associated with greater reduction in body weight than placebo, according to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Xavier Pi-Sunyer, MD, from Columbia University in New York City, and colleagues conducted a 56-week trial involving 3,731 patients without type 2 diabetes (mean BMI, 38.3). Patients were randomly assigned in a 2:1 ratio to once-daily subcutaneous injections of liraglutide (2,487 patients) or placebo (1,244 patients); all participants received lifestyle modification counseling.

The researchers found that patients in the liraglutide and placebo groups had lost a mean of 8.4 kg and 2.8 kg of body weight, respectively, at week 56 (P=.001).

Overall, 63.2% and 27.1% of the liraglutide and placebo groups, respectively, lost at least 5% of their body weight (P<.001), and 33.1% and 10.6%, respectively, lost more than 10% (P<.001).

Mild or moderate nausea and diarrhea were the most frequently reported adverse events with liraglutide. Serious events occurred in 6.2% and 5.0% of patients in the liraglutide and placebo groups, respectively.

“In this study, 3.0 mg of liraglutide, as an adjunct to diet and exercise, was associated with reduced body weight and improved metabolic control,” the researchers wrote.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical and weight loss industries; the study was partially funded by Novo Nordisk, the manufacturer of liraglutide.


  1. Pi-Sunyer X et al. N Engl J Med. 2015;373:11-22.