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Curr Med Res Opin. 2017 Jun;33(6):1045-1055. doi: 10.1080/03007995.2017.1298522. Epub 2017 Mar 24.

The role of the new basal insulin analogs in addressing unmet clinical needs in people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

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a Diabetes Centers of America Inc. , Plano , TX , USA.
b Yale University School of Medicine , New Haven , CT , USA.
c East Carolina University , Greenville , NC , USA.



Despite improvements in anti-hyperglycemic therapies, there are many unmet clinical needs that hinder successful glycemic control in people being treated with current basal insulin analogs.


This paper reviews the unmet needs associated with current basal insulin therapy and describes the most recent basal insulins for the treatment of diabetes.


PubMed was searched for articles on basal insulin analogs published between 2000 and April 2016.


Although long-acting insulin analogs, such as insulin glargine 100 units/mL and insulin detemir, have come towards approximating physiologic basal insulin levels, limitations such as hypoglycemia and intra- and inter-individual variability are associated with their use resulting in glycemic fluctuations. Some basal insulins lack 24 hour coverage, requiring some patients to split their dose, increasing the number of injections required to maintain glycemic control. Fear of hypoglycemia and the need for additional injections often leads to poor compliance and suboptimal glycemic control. Long-acting insulin analogs, such as insulin glargine 300 units/mL and insulin degludec, have improved upon the shortcomings of the current basal insulin analogs. Improved pharmacodynamic/pharmacokinetic profiles afford lower intra-patient variability and an extended duration of action, providing full and stable 24 hour basal insulin coverage with once daily dosing, and comparable efficacy to insulin glargine with lower rates of hypoglycemia.


The improved pharmacodynamic/pharmacokinetic profiles of new long-acting insulin formulations provide greater glycemic control with once daily dosing. With the growing number of therapeutic choices available, physicians have more scope to individualize patient options for basal insulin therapy.


Basal insulin; hypoglycemia; insulin degludec; insulin detemir; insulin glargine; insulin glargine 300 units/mL

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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