Daily Medication Pearl: Exenatide (Byetta)

Medication Pearl of the Day: Exenatide (Byetta)

Indication: Exenatide (Byetta) is a glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist indicated as an adjunct to diet and exercise to improve glycemic control in adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus.


  • Dosing: Inject subcutaneously within 60 minutes prior to morning and evening meals, or before the 2 main meals of the day, approximately 6 hours or more apart.
  • Dosage forms: 5 mcg per dose, 60 doses, 1.2 mL prefilled pen; 10 mcg per dose, 60 doses, 2.4 mL prefilled pen.
  • Adverse events (AEs): Most common (≥5%) AEs occurring more frequently than placebo in clinical trials were nausea, hypoglycemia, vomiting, diarrhea, feeling jittery, dizziness, headache, and dyspepsia. Nausea usually decreases over time
  • Mechanism of action: Incretins, such as GLP-1, enhance glucose-dependent insulin secretion and exhibit other antihyperglycemic actions following their release into the circulation from the gut. Byetta is a GLP-1 receptor agonist that enhances glucose-dependent insulin secretion by the pancreatic beta-cell, suppresses inappropriately elevated glucagon secretion, and slows gastric emptying.
  • Manufacturer: Amylin Pharmaceuticals