A drug called semaglutide, which is approved for obese or overweight adults, also helps adolescents shed pounds and have a healthier heart, according to a new study. In an international phase 3a clinical trial, obese adolescents who received semaglutide once a week had a 16.1 percent decrease in their body mass index (BMI) compared to placebo, while the BMI of those taking a placebo increased by 0.6. percent rose. Senior author Silva Arslanian, MD, professor of pediatrics and clinical and translational sciences, who holds the Richard L. Day Endowed Chair in Pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, said, “Obesity rates are on the rise, not just in the U.S. but all over the world.” “Semaglutide is an obesity drug that mimics a hormone called glucagon-like peptide-1 to target areas of the brain that reduce appetite and improve eating control. In 2021, this drug was approved for chronic weight management in adults.” to assess whether semaglutide is also effective in youth, researchers enrolled 201 adolescents aged 12 to 18 who were obese or overweight at multiple centers. The participants received either subcutaneous injections of semaglutide 2.4 mg once a week or placebo, and all received concurrent lifestyle intervention advice on healthy diet and exercise during the trial. After 68 weeks, 72.5% of semaglutide participants had achieved at least 5% weight loss, compared with only 17% of those who received placebo. obesity are also more likely to have depression, anxiety, poor self-esteem and other psychological problems n. The analysis showed that semaglutide participants had improvements in cardiovascular disease scular risk factors, including waist circumference, a blood sugar measurement called HbA1c, low-density and very-low-density total lipoprotein cholesterol, triglycerides, and liver enzymes compared to the placebo group. However, there was no statistically significant difference in blood pressure or high-density lipoprotein cholesterol between the two groups.