A 60-minute minimally invasive type of treatment involving inserting a thin tube down a person’s throat has been found to improve hypoglycaemia in type 2 diabetes, a study has shown.
Revita which is a duodenal mucosal resurfacing (DMR) technique has unveiled some positive results.
Developed by US company Fractyl Laboratories, it involves inserting a thin tube, which is connected to a deflated silicone balloon, down a patient’s throat.
Once the balloon reaches the duodenum, the first section of the small intestine, it inflates and pumps hot water through the surrounding tissue.
By burning away some of the intestine lining, it is thought people are more able to absorb and process sugar.
Dr Harith Rajagopalan, co-founder and CEO of Fractyl, said: “This is the first peer-reviewed publication of human clinical data from the proof-of-concept trial.
“This study is part of a growing body of evidence that suggests Revita DMR may address the underlying metabolic complications of insulin resistance and could represent a new treatment for option for patients with type 2 diabetes who are failing oral medications or have evidence of fatty liver disease.”
The results of the trial, which have been published in the Diabetes Care journal, involved 39 people with type 2 diabetes being treated with single-procedure DMR.
All participants had HbA1c levels greater than 7.5 per cent (58 mmol/mol) and took one or more antidiabetic medication.
They received DMR of varying lengths of duodenum and every single person had clinically significant improvements in hypoglycaemia in the short-term, with acceptable safety and tolerability.
The average reduction in HbA1c levels was 1.2 per cent after six months.
Those who received a longer segment of the duodenum had a 1.4 per cent reduction in blood sugar levels, compared with a 0.7 per cent reduction among those who had a short segment.
The procedure takes just an hour to carry out and Fractyl claims it is a cost and time-effective alternative to bariatric surgery.
This cohort is still being examined, and 12-month data is expected later this year which will show how effective Revita is in the long-term.
A 50-patient, multicentre, international clinical trial is currently underway in patients with type 2 diabetes, in which 40 patients have already been treated across sites in the United Kingdom, Chile, Italy, Netherlands and Belgium.