Teduglutide for the treatment of short bowel syndrome

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Extensive resection of the intestine impairs its absorptive capacity and results in short bowel syndrome when the nutritional equilibrium is compromised. The remnant intestine adapts structurally to compensate, but nutritional autonomy cannot be achieved in patients with intestinal failure, requiring intravenous fluids and parenteral nutrition (PN) for sustenance of life. PN is expensive and associated with serious complications. Efforts to minimize or eliminate the need for PN heralded research focusing on the therapeutic utility of intrinsic gut factors involved in the postresection adaptation process. With the breakthrough recognition of the intestinotrophic properties of glucagon-like peptide-2, teduglutide, a recombinant analogue of glucagon-like peptide-2, is being investigated as a promising hope to mitigate the requirement of PN. Clinical studies to date have demonstrated a desirable benefit-to-risk profile in regards to its safety and efficacy. If approved for marketing, it will be the first of its class in short bowel syndrome management, offering an innovative therapeutic modality for this debilitating condition.

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