Novo Nordisk (NVO) is generally recognized as one of the world's leaders in diabetes drug development and sales with over $2B in R&D spending in 2013, and 27% market share in diabetes care-higher than any other company. It continues to push the envelope with its drug development programs and particularly its diabetes pill research. In this article, I bring attention to results released earlier this year and ongoing oral clinical efforts by Novo that should complete by the end of the year.
Novo's oral diabetes drug development comprises two arms: insulin and glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1). Both drugs regulate blood glucose, with GLP-1 stimulating insulin production by the pancreas. As pharmaceuticals, insulin can be used to treat early and late stages of either Type-1 or Type-2 diabetes whereas GLP-1 can be used only in early-stage Type 2 diabetes. The current market for insulin is about eight times that of the GLP-1