NovoMix medicines contain the active substance insulin aspart (100 units/ml) combined with protamine to make it longer acting. It is available as:
- NovoMix 30 (30% insulin aspart and 70% insulin aspart protamine);
- NovoMix 50 (50% insulin aspart and 50% insulin aspart protamine);
- NovoMix 70 (70% insulin aspart and 30% insulin aspart protamine).
Diabetes is a disease in which the body does not produce enough insulin or is not able to use insulin effectively, resulting in raised levels of glucose in the blood. NovoMix is a replacement insulin.
The active substance in NovoMix, insulin aspart, is absorbed faster by the body than natural insulin and it starts working soon after it is injected. NovoMix contains both insulin aspart and a longer-acting form called insulin aspart protamine, which is absorbed more slowly and works for longer.
NovoMix acts in the same way as naturally produced insulin and helps glucose from the blood to enter cells. By restoring the effects of insulin, the level of blood glucose is controlled better and the symptoms and complications of diabetes are reduced.
Several studies have found NovoMix to be effective either at reducing glycosylated haemoglobin (HbA1c, a substance which indicates how well blood glucose is controlled over 12 to 28 weeks) or in reducing blood glucose levels after a meal.
NovoMix 30 gave almost identical results as biphasic human insulin 30 (a combination of 30% rapid-acting and 70% intermediate-acting human insulin) in 294 adults with type 1 diabetes (when the pancreas cannot produce insulin) or type 2 diabetes (when the body is unable to use insulin effectively), and in 167 patients aged between 10 and 17 years with type 1 diabetes. NovoMix 50 and NovoMix 70 gave better overall control of blood glucose than biphasic human insulin 30 in 664 patients with type 1 or type 2 diabetes.
In 5 studies involving a total of around 1,350 patients with type 2 diabetes, adding NovoMix medicines to other diabetes medicines (metformin, sulphonylureas, pioglitazone and liraglutide) also resulted in better control of blood glucose than the other medicines or NovoMix used alone.
The European Medicines Agency decided that NovoMix’s benefits are greater than its risks and it can be authorised for use in the EU.
NovoMix 30 can be used in patients from 10 years of age. NovoMix 50 and NovoMix 70 can only be used in adults (from 18 years of age).