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Another Weight Loss Drug Approved

The US Food and Drug Administration approved pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly's weight loss drug tirzepatide yesterday, the latest endorsement of a new class of medications transforming the treatment of obesity and other conditions. The weekly injectable will be marketed as Zepbound and is expected to cost roughly $1,000 per month.

Clinical trials have shown the appetite-suppressing drug can help patients lose 21% of their body weight when combined with a healthy lifestyle. The success of the class of drugs, which includes Novo Nordisk's Wegovy/Ozempic, has stimulated demand over the last two years, straining supply as drugmakers build out manufacturing capacity. Lilly's success with the diabetes version of the drug (Mounjaro) has helped make it the world's most valuable pharmaceutical company.

Analysts claim the FDA's stamp of approval will broaden access to the drug. Roughly 40% of US adults are overweight or obese, a major risk factor for heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers.

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