Zepbound is a brand name for tirzepatide and will be available by the end of the year to treat obesity — an injection medication similar to Mounjaro, Ozempic and Wegovy
The Food and Drug Administration has approved another medication to treat chronic obesity in adults.
The agency announced Wednesday that the new weight loss drug Zepbound — from pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly — is another version of Mounjaro, which is already FDA-approved to treat Type 2 diabetes, but many have used it off-label for weight loss.
The two drugs are brand names for tirzepatide, which has been proven to be highly effective for weight loss by reducing appetite and improving how the body breaks down sugar and fat.
Zepbound — taken by injection in the thigh, stomach or arm — will be sold as a weight loss prescription medication to be used “in combination with a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity,” the FDA says.
“Obesity and overweight are serious conditions that can be associated with some of the leading causes of death such as heart disease, stroke and diabetes,” Dr. John Sharretts — director of the Division of Diabetes, Lipid Disorders, and Obesity in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research — said in a statement. “In light of increasing rates of both obesity and overweight in the United States, today’s approval addresses an unmet medical need.”
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The FDA notes that Zepbound will be approved for those whose body mass index (BMI) — a widely criticized standard — is 30 or greater, qualifying them as obese. The drug will also be approved for those with a BMI of 27 with at least one weight-related condition, such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes or high cholesterol.
Eli Lilly said Zepbound is expected to be available in the United States by the end of the year, with a price of $1,059 without insurance.
Zepbound and Mounjaro are similar to Ozempic and Wegovy — brand names for semaglutide — which work in the brain to impact satiety and have skyrocketed in popularity in Hollywood and beyond for weight loss.
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