March 25, 2017
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Saxenda

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Saxenda

SAXENDA®
(liraglutide) Injection, Solution for Subcutaneous Use

WARNING

RISK OF THYROID C-CELL TUMORS

  • Liraglutide causes dose-dependent and treatmentduration- dependent thyroid C-cell tumors at clinically relevant exposures in both genders of rats and mice. It is unknown whether Saxenda® causes thyroid C-cell tumors, including medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC), in humans, as the human relevance of liraglutide-induced rodent thyroid C-cell tumors has not been determined [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS and Nonclinical Toxicology].
  • Saxenda® is contraindicated in patients with a personal or family history of MTC and in patients with Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia syndrome type 2 (MEN 2). Counsel patients regarding the potential risk of MTC with use of Saxenda® and inform them of symptoms of thyroid tumors (e.g., a mass in the neck, dysphagia, dyspnea, persistent hoarseness). Routine monitoring of serum calcitonin or using thyroid ultrasound is of uncertain value for early detection of MTC in patients treated with Saxenda® [see CONTRAINDICATIONS, WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].

DRUG DESCRIPTION

Saxenda® contains liraglutide, an analog of human GLP-1 and acts as a GLP-1 receptor agonist. The peptide precursor of liraglutide, produced by a process that includes expression of recombinant DNA in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, has been engineered to be 97% homologous to native human GLP-1 by substituting arginine for lysine at position 34. Liraglutide is made by attaching a C-16 fatty acid (palmitic acid) with a glutamic acid spacer on the remaining lysine residue at position 26 of the peptide precursor. The molecular formula of liraglutide is C172H265N43O51 and the molecular weight is 3751.2 Daltons. The structural formula (Figure 1) is:

Figure 1: Structural Formula of liraglutide

SAXENDA® (liraglutide) Structural Formula Illustration

Saxenda® is a clear, colorless solution. Each 1 mL of Saxenda® solution contains 6 mg of liraglutide and the following inactive ingredients: disodium phosphate dihydrate, 1.42 mg; propylene glycol, 14 mg; phenol, 5.5 mg; and water for injection. Each pre-filled pen contains a 3 mL solution of Saxenda® equivalent to 18 mg liraglutide (free-base, anhydrous).

Last reviewed on RxList: 11/14/2016
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.

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