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New trial: weight loss medicines impact on muscle mass preservation

Dr. Mick Singh Health-X

Reviewed by Mick Singh, MD

New trial: weight loss medicines impact on muscle mass preservation

In an era where the battle against obesity is relentless, a groundbreaking clinical trial is set to investigate the dual treatment of the diabetes drug Mounjaro alongside an experimental muscle loss drug, azelaprag. The focus of this trial isn’t just about shedding weight, but crucially, about maintaining muscle mass – a concern often overlooked in weight loss studies. The announcement on Thursday revealed that the joint venture between BioAge Labs and Eli Lilly’s development arm, Chorus, seeks to explore how these medications may positively impact body composition.

Azelaprag, designed to mimic the activity of apelin – a substance naturally released in the body post-exercise – holds promise in preventing muscle atrophy and promoting muscle regeneration. The drug has exhibited significant potential in averting muscle loss, particularly among older adults, as indicated in BioAge’s previous clinical trials. Meanwhile, Mounjaro, classified as a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist primarily used for diabetes treatment, is also gaining attention for its potential in weight loss, akin to the popular drugs Ozempic and Wegovy.

The forthcoming trial is poised to scrutinize how combining both azelaprag and Mounjaro might impact weight loss and body composition in obese individuals. Early preclinical studies on obese mice have shown promising signs – an increase in total weight loss with a normalized body composition and reduced glucose levels without a significant decrease in calorie intake. Kristen Fortney, BioAge’s CEO, emphasized the potential of this combined approach, believing it could foster healthier weight loss methods.

CDC reports that 41.9% of adults aged 60 and above grapple with obesity

However, this trial arrives on the heels of concerns raised by previous studies, notably involving semaglutide, an active ingredient in Ozempic and Wegovy, which pointed to potential lean muscle loss in participants. This is a critical factor given that the average age of participants was 52, underlining the need to understand the nuances of weight loss in relation to muscle preservation.

These developments come at a time when obesity continues to prevail among older adults in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 41.9% of adults aged 60 and above grapple with obesity. This ongoing battle against weight-related health issues intensifies the urgency for more comprehensive weight loss solutions that don’t compromise muscle mass.

As the trial is slated to commence in mid-2024, the anticipation is high for the potential insights that might emerge from this innovative approach. The focus on not just shedding weight but retaining muscle mass signifies a significant shift in the landscape of weight loss strategies, offering hope for more holistic and effective solutions in the fight against obesity.

Medically directed weight loss program

When it comes to achieving sustainable weight loss and overall well-being, a medically directed weight loss program stands out as a superior option. Unlike fad diets or quick-fix solutions, a medically supervised program takes a holistic and evidence-based approach to address individual health needs.

These programs are tailored to the specific requirements of each participant, considering factors like age, medical history, lifestyle, and underlying health conditions. The guidance of trained healthcare professionals ensures that weight loss is achieved safely and with a focus on long-term results. Medical supervision also provides a comprehensive understanding of the metabolic and physiological aspects of weight management, making it possible to create a customized plan that promotes not only weight loss but also improved health, reduced risks of obesity-related conditions, and sustainable lifestyle changes.

In this way, a medically directed weight loss program offers a well-rounded, scientifically grounded, and effective approach to achieving and maintaining a healthy weight.

Weight Loss

Get access to GLP-1 medication and 1:1 support to meet your weight loss goals.

Disclaimer: If you have any medical questions or concerns, please talk to your healthcare provider. The content within the Health-X Knowledge Base is supported by peer-reviewed research and data sourced from reputable medical societies and governmental entities. It is essential to note, however, that these resources do not replace the need for personalized medical guidance, diagnosis, or treatment from a qualified medical professional.

Dr. Erica Sheck

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During her tenure at Elysium SurgiSpa, she independently performed minor surgical and laser procedures, demonstrating her expertise and precision in specialized nursing care. In addition, Dr. Sheck refined her skills as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner at Chicago Area Pediatrics, where she provided primary care for children, demonstrating her adaptability and capacity to serve a variety of patient populations.

Dr. Sheck is not only well-versed in clinical practice, but also compassionate and generous, as evidenced by her volunteer work at Rush Oak Park Hospital, Sigma Theta, and Medical Guardian. These experiences have prepared her to excel in time-constrained and high-stress environments, providing exceptional specialized nursing care with unwavering commitment. With Dr. Erica Sheck as an integral member of the team, Health-X can confidently uphold its commitment to providing superior healthcare services, as her exemplary nursing skills have impacted the lives of innumerable individuals.

Jamie Tountas

Meet Jamie Tountas, a seasoned expert with nearly 18 years of invaluable experience. Jamie’s distinctive combination of management expertise and medical care experience enabled her to found MobileNurse, a highly regarded concierge medical service.

Her journey began with a nursing education at Elmhurst College, where she refined her healthcare-related skills and knowledge. Jamie demonstrated her leadership abilities by administering operations at the prestigious University of Chicago Hospital and Insurance Exam Services, where she gained invaluable insights into the complexities of healthcare administration. Jamie founded MobileNurse, a revolutionary platform that enables patients to receive rudimentary testing and care in the comfort of their own homes, out of a passion for developing innovative healthcare solutions.

Her commitment to patient-centered services has had a profound effect on the healthcare landscape, simplifying and enhancing the healthcare experience for innumerable individuals. Jamie contributes a wealth of experience, effective leadership, a forward-thinking perspective, and a keen eye for calculated risk management to her position as the head of strategy and operations at Health-X. Her strategic approach and aptitude for navigating the complexities of the medical industry keep Health-X at the vanguard of delivering innovative healthcare solutions. Health-X is poised to continue its mission of providing superior medical services and influencing the future of healthcare through innovation and compassion with Jamie Tountas at the helm.

Dr. Mick Singh

Meet Dr. Singh, the visionary leader driving the mission of Health-X. With a solid foundation and a wide range of expertise, he charts the strategic course and envisions the success of this innovative endeavor.

Dr. Singh is a medical professional with a degree from Rush Medical College and extensive post-graduate training in anesthesiology, interventional spine surgery, and a one-year intensive cosmetic surgery program. His extensive and varied training has influenced his healthcare philosophy, which focuses on outcomes that improve the quality of life for patients.

Prior to his current position at Health-X, Dr. Singh gained invaluable experience as an Attending Physician at Mercy Healthcare for ten years. After that, he embarked on a 7-year journey as Owner and Medical Director of Elysium SurgiSpa, where he gained a deeper understanding of patient care and satisfaction. Additionally, Dr. Singh served with distinction in the United States Air Force, attaining the rank of captain. This experience has imparted in him a sense of discipline, commitment, and dedication to excellence. Dr. Singh’s exceptional pedigree and extensive skill set place him at the vanguard of health delivery models, ensuring that Health-X remains an industry leader. Health-X continues to revolutionize healthcare under his direction, positively impacting innumerable lives with each step forward.


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