Pramlintide (Symlin), a synthetic analog of a neurohormone amylin, was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for use along with premeal insulin in patients with type 1. In patients with type 2 diabetes, pramlintide is approved for addition to pre-meal insulin in those patients who are either only on pre-meal insulin or those receiving the combination of insulin and metformin and/or a sulfonylurea. This article reviews the pharmacology, pharmacokinetics, dosing, clinical trials, safety, contraindications, and drug interactions of pramlintide therapy. A search for published clinical trials and therapeutic reviews in the English language was done in the following databases: Iowa Drug Information Service (1966 to July 2008), MEDLINE (1966 to July 2008), and International Pharmaceutical Abstracts (1970 to July 2008). Pramlintide and amylin were used as keywords and title words. References of key articles were also reviewed to identify additional publications. Amylin is a 37 amino acid peptide neurohormone co-secreted from the beta cells of the pancreas, along with insulin, in response to meals. Amylin lowers serum glucose by decreasing glucagon release, slowing gastric emptying and decreasing food intake. Pramlintide, a synthetic analog of amylin, reduces 2-hour postprandial blood glucose between 3.4 and 5 mmol/L, reduces A1C by 0.2% to 0.7% and has no effect on fasting glucose levels. The use of pramlintide was associated with up to a 1.6 kg weight loss. Nausea was the most commonly reported adverse event. Pramlintide is an amylin analog that was FDA approved for the treatment of type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Its use results in modest reduction of A1C and the most frequent side effects are hypoglycemia and nausea.
Keywords: amylin; pramlintide; type 1 diabetes; type 2 diabetes.