This paper was published as Postgraduate Medical Journal, 2008, 84 (996), pp. 524-531. It is available from http://pmj.bmj.com/content/84/996/524. Doi: 10.1136/pgmj.2008.067918Metadata only entryType 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is a progressive disorder caused by a combination of insulin resistance and β cell dysfunction. It is associated with an increased and premature risk of cardiovascular disease as well as specific microvascular complications such as retinopathy, nephropathy and neuropathy. In the last 5 years new glucose lowering drugs acting on novel pathways have been developed, licensed and launched, such as the glucagon-like peptide (GLP-1) agonists (exenatide) and dipeptidyl peptidase (DPP-IV) inhibitors such as sitagliptin and vildagliptin. This review looks at these new agents in terms of their mode of action, pharmacokinetics and use in clinical practice. This review also includes new agents in the area of weight loss that may have a positive effect for glucose management—for example, rimonabant
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