A Shot for Weight Loss Shots in Your Future?

By Gary Pepper, M.D. Editor-in-Chief

Weight loss shots might be the latest weight loss technique.  A major pharmaceutical company is experimenting with possible weight loss injections. The company, Amylin Pharmaceuticals, has already pioneered a unique diabetes medication, Byetta, which lowers the blood sugar and is also associated with weight loss in diabetics who use it. The experimental medication being developed combines two hormone-like medications into an injection taken in the morning and evening.  The first of the two hormones is already available as Symelin (pramlintide), another drug pioneered by Amylin Pharmaceutical. Symelin is presently used in the treatment of insulin requiring diabetics and is associated with mild weight loss. The second hormone is synthetic leptin, a hormone produced by fat cells which decreases appetite through its action at specific brain centers which control hunger. The researchers have formulated leptin through recombinant DNA technology into a chemical called metreleptin. In the recent experiments both Symelin and metreleptin are combined into a single injection. 56% of treated subjects lost 10% of their body weight in 6 months. Almost a third of subjects treated lost 15% of body weight. Binge eating was reduced by 43%. Adverse effects involved nausea and local skin reactions to the injections.

This weight loss injections are not yet available to the public. For more information regarding this or any of the other drugs mentioned in this article, contact Amylin Pharmaceuticals. Only you and your health care professional can decide which treatments are appropriate and whether weight loss shots are for you .

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  • I am very interested in this article as 20 years ago I had a renal transplant and about 2 years ago I began gaining weight and after starting and abiding by the rules of Weight Watchers and then after seeing a weight loss specialist, I could not and continue to be unable to lose weight. I am investigating why I can no longer loss any weight……instead it continues to go up!

  • Dr. G. Pepper

    Your situation is pretty unique. You have been on anti-rejection medication for 20 years and for most of that time did not gain weight? Since most people after transplant are taking steroids which are perhaps the most powerful fo the weight gain medications, you have done extremely well.

    Has anyone tested your thyroid function? That may give some clues to this unexpected and resistant weight gain. Why not check with your doctor and see if the blood tests have been done?

    (See terms of service regarding this response)

  • Tony Kingkade

    It would be interesting to see these studies. Very obese people can become leptin resistant and exogenous leptin has not shown to be beneficial in some. How obese were the subjects and how long had they been obese? Was body fat measured or just body weight?

    The binge eating reduction is super!

    A 15% body weight loss in 6 mos for a 300 lb person is less than 2 pounds a week. Lifestyle changes can easily result in more fat loss.
    With any fat loss program that doesn’t teach people how to cook, eat and live a healthy lifestyle, the tendency to regain the fat is eminent.

  • timothy mwanzia

    dear mettabolissim
    i would like to know about nutritional management in family planing as well as use of contraceptives and there effects on nutrition.

  • Samudra Madhanaya

    I wouldn’t normally comment to a blog but I liked this post therefore I felt compelled to do so. Straying off the subject a bit, what is your opinion concerning walking? It is currently being showcased as the best exercise to burn fat.

  • Brian RD

    Yes, walking is a great form of exercise that is accessible, convenient, and free. It is certainly a good choice to burn fat, but not the best.

    High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is a red hot area of research in exercise science right now and has been shown in many studies to burn fat better than walking.

    You can read more about it here:



  • Denise Archie

    I am on a weight loss shot now that i go and get every week at my doctors office not quite sure what kind of shot it is but it has helped me loose weight i have been on this for 1 month and i have already lost 22 lbs.My doctor has also prescribed me with an appetite suppresant.Is this normal.


    I am Medical doctor 54 years height 5 feet 2 inches and weight 93 kg. I am looking some scientific solution as I beleive that I am having heriditary obesity as my paternal and maternal uncle both were fatty. Can you suggest me . I am analytical personality and beleive in scintific solutuon hormonal therapy. The other methods excercise, diet, gym does’t work in my case. No bariatic surgey etc