Selected research from leading health care experts whose findings have a direct bearing on public policies effecting medical progress. Research is chosen based on its quality and relevance by the Medical Progress Today editorial staff.

Selected Research

Weight Loss Maintained With Rimonabant After Two Years
Medscape, 3-9-05

Rimonabant is the active ingredient in Acomplia, the weight reduction/smoking cessation drug mentioned earlier. This article describes the latest clinical trial findings demonstrating its potential for long term weight control.

“After two years of treatment with rimonabant, a novel endocannabinoid inhibitor, overweight and obese patients were able to maintain weight loss and reductions in waist circumference, a finding that paves the way for Sanofi-Aventis to file for the drug’s approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration by July of this year…Participants in the study were randomized to either low-dose (5 mg) or high-dose (20 mg) rimonabant or placebo. All patients were told to reduce their daily caloric intake by 600 calories, but they were not given any specific dietary guidelines, nor were they given recommendations about exercise…after two years patients receiving the 20-mg dose of rimonabant had maintained a 7.2-kg weight loss compared with a 2.5-kg loss among patients receiving placebo.”

Acomplia was developed based on the interesting observation that smoking pot (cannabis) spurs the “munchies”, i.e. it makes people hungry. Researchers theorized that if the same chemicals (cannabinoids) that spiked appetite in the brain could be blocked from their receptors, patients would experience fewer hunger pangs and lose weight. So far, their bet appears to be paying off.

Project FDA.
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