Consistently taking medication and monitoring blood-sugar levels can be a big challenge for diabetics. A new implantable pump could make a big difference in the treatment plan for many individuals with diabetes. Intarcia Therapeutics Inc. is a Boston-based startup that has developed a pump, about the size of a matchstick, that can be implanted into the patient’s abdomen. The pump continually delivers a small amount of exenatide, which controls blood-sugar levels, for up to a year. The results of a study of 520 patients using the pump and oral medicines showed promising results by significantly lower blood sugar.
The pump is called the ITCA 650, and only requires a five-minute procedure to insert the device. Intarcia Therapeutics Inc. is receiving some funding support from Servier, a French pharmaceutical company. Regulators will review the device in early 2016 before it can go to market.