Novo Nordisk’s insulin Levemir was not associated in any increase in incidence of cancer when compared with human insulin in studies including some 9,000 patients, according to a new analysis revealed recently.
Levemir is long-acting insulin analogues used by diabetics to control their blood sugar. Scientists analysed data from 21 randomised trials and concluded Levemir was associated with a statistically significant lower rate of cancer than human insulin treatment.
Novo Nordisk says Levemir does not bind any more than human insulin to the insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) receptor, which is known to be involved in promoting tumour growth. Unlike human insulin, a hormone normally produced by the pancreas that helps the body use glucose for energy, Levemir allows them to last longer in the body.
Source: The Daily Star, October 10, 2009