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With Almost a Quarter of Americans Afraid of Needles, This Diabetes Visionary is Focused on Bringing to Market an Innovative Oral Insulin
New York, November 2018 – Nadav Kidron is on a mission. With almost a quarter of Americans afraid of needles, he understands this fear could cause many diabetics to skip much-needed injections, and so, he is spearheading a team that is developing a better way to treat the disease. Now, he’s using November’s Diabetes Awareness Month to spread his message.
“Non-compliance to diabetes medications is a major cause of hospitalizations in America and can lead to serious health complications,” said Kidron, CEO of Oramed Pharmaceuticals, which is leading the way in bringing the first oral insulin product to market. With human trials of Oramed’s oral insulin taking place under the FDA in centers across the U.S., his goal is to delay or even negate the need for insulin injections for many Type 2 diabetics.
Kidron points to a 2013 World Health Organization (WHO) study that reports only 50 percent of people in developed countries adequately adhere to their medicines, no matter what the disease. The same study showed that diabetes was the second leading cause of hospitalizations caused by non-adherence at four different American hospitals (mental illness was first).
“Failure to adhere to medication is particularly an issue among people with Type 2 diabetes, because – unlike children with Type 1 diabetes who develop the habit of taking their insulin as instructed at a very young age – they tend to be older and have a harder time adapting to new routines,” he said. “For some Type 2 diabetics, add to that simply fearing the pain or discomfort of administering insulin shots to themselves, and you have an additional barrier to care.”
Kidron references a Gallup poll that pegs fear of needles and getting shots as the sixth most prevalent fear in the U.S., just behind spiders and insects. “Why subject people with diabetes to injecting themselves if we can deliver an alternative that is not only more convenient and easier to consume, but is actually proving to be more effective?” he said.
He pointed out that people would likely also start insulin therapy earlier – which the American Diabetes Association confirms would lead to better outcomes for those with diabetes – if it didn’t involve needles. “Right now, early treatment is rare because most people prefer to delay insulin injections, which require taking a shot,” he said, explaining that early injections can also cause hypoglycemia and lead to other health risks.
Game-changer for 30 million Americans
According to Kidron, Oramed is delivering oral insulin in a way that a needle could never replicate, providing a more efficient and safer platform for delivering insulin by mimicking the body’s natural process of insulin going directly to the liver rather than via the bloodstream. He said that because injections introduce insulin directly into the bloodstream, only a fraction reaches the liver, often causing excess sugar to be stored in fat and muscle which can result in weight gain.
With Oramed’s proprietary platform, the active insulin is protected as it travels through the stomach and into the intestine, and its absorption is increased along the intestinal wall. “The result is better glucose control, reduced hyper and hypoglycemia, and potentially less weight gain – and treatment can begin earlier, improving outcomes,” he said. He also explained that oral insulin would be easier for diabetics to incorporate into their daily routine because they simply take a pill.
“The incidence of diabetes around the world is growing at an exponential rate, yet for those maintaining a healthy lifestyle, the disease can be managed when their medication is taken properly,” Kidron said. “Oramed’s goal is to make it easier for people to do so.”
Results of the national trials are expected to be announced in 2019.
For more information please visit: www.oramed.com