Diabetes drug classification according to machanism of action

Diabetes drugs are classification

(toc) Table of Contents


Diabetes drugs are classified into several groups based on their mechanisms of action. Here are the main categories along with examples for each:

1. Biguanides

  • Example: Metformin (Glucophage)

2. Sulfonylureas

  • Examples:
    • Glipizide (Glucotrol)
    • Glyburide (Diabeta, Micronase)
    • Glimepiride (Amaryl)

3. Meglitinides

  • Examples:
    • Repaglinide (Prandin)
    • Nateglinide (Starlix)

4. Thiazolidinediones (TZDs)

  • Examples:
    • Pioglitazone (Actos)
    • Rosiglitazone (Avandia)

5. Dipeptidyl Peptidase-4 (DPP-4) Inhibitors

  • Examples:
    • Sitagliptin (Januvia)
    • Saxagliptin (Onglyza)
    • Linagliptin (Tradjenta)
    • Alogliptin (Nesina)

6. Glucagon-like Peptide-1 (GLP-1) Receptor Agonists

  • Examples:
    • Exenatide (Byetta, Bydureon)
    • Liraglutide (Victoza)
    • Dulaglutide (Trulicity)
    • Semaglutide (Ozempic)
    • Lixisenatide (Adlyxin)

7. Sodium-Glucose Co-Transporter-2 (SGLT2) Inhibitors

  • Examples:
    • Canagliflozin (Invokana)
    • Dapagliflozin (Farxiga)
    • Empagliflozin (Jardiance)
    • Ertugliflozin (Steglatro)

8. Alpha-Glucosidase Inhibitors

  • Examples:
    • Acarbose (Precose)
    • Miglitol (Glyset)

9. Bile Acid Sequestrants

  • Example: Colesevelam (Welchol)

10. Dopamine-2 Agonists

  • Example: Bromocriptine (Cycloset)

11. Amylin Analogs

  • Example: Pramlintide (Symlin)

12. Insulins

  • Examples:
    • Rapid-acting: Insulin lispro (Humalog), Insulin aspart (NovoLog)
    • Short-acting: Regular insulin (Humulin R, Novolin R)
    • Intermediate-acting: Insulin NPH (Humulin N, Novolin N)
    • Long-acting: Insulin glargine (Lantus, Toujeo), Insulin detemir (Levemir)
    • Ultra long-acting: Insulin degludec (Tresiba)

These groups help manage blood glucose levels through different mechanisms, such as increasing insulin secretion, improving insulin sensitivity, decreasing glucose production in the liver, and enhancing glucose excretion in the urine.

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