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AstraZeneca Launches the New Bydureon Pen in the US

Updated: 8/14/21 8:00 amPublished: 9/12/14
By Kelly Close

Twitter summary: New Bydureon pen launched in US – more user-friendly “twist, tap, twist” procedure simplifies the injection process

AstraZeneca recently launched its once-weekly Bydureon dual-chambered pen (exenatide extended-release for injection suspension) for adults with type 2 diabetes in the US. The FDA approved the pen on March 3, and the pen has been recommended for European approval (meaning approval is likely to occur in the upcoming months). The new Bydureon device is a pre-filled, single-use pen injector, which eliminates the need for the user to transfer the medication between a vial and syringe during the self-injection process and reduces some of the "hassle factor" of taking Bydureon. Before, users of Bydureon had to go through a more involved process to prepare and inject the drug. For full safety and side effect information for Bydureon, please see AstraZeneca’s website.

The device involves a “twist, tap, twist” preparation process, an improvement from the previous vial-syringe injection process. The user attaches the needle, twists the base of the pen to combine the medicine (stopping at the sound of a “click”), taps the pen firmly against the palm of his/her hand until the medicine is mixed (up to 80 times or more), twists the base of the pen once more until the injection button is released, and then finally removes the needle cover and injects. For a full practice tutorial on using the Bydureon pen, please visit its website. While this new process is a significant upgrade from manual mixing, it is a step behind ready-to-use GLP-1 receptor agonists such as Novo Nordisk’s Victoza (once-daily liraglutide), Sanofi’s Lyxumia (once-daily lixisenatide), or Eli Lilly’s Trulicity (once-weekly dulaglutide) – these products do not require any preparation other than attaching the needle and injecting. AstraZeneca is working on a more automated form of delivery that will further increase Bydureon delivery convenience in the future. –NL/KC/AJW

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About the authors

Kelly L. Close is the founder and Chair of the Board of The diaTribe Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to improving the lives of people living with diabetes and prediabetes, and... Read the full bio »