Medicine & USMLE

Pramlintide (Amylin Analogs)

Diabetes Drugs (New)
  1. DPP-4 Inhibitors
  2. GLP-1 Analogs
  3. Insulin Overview
  4. Insulin Preparations
  5. Metformin (Biguanides)
  6. TZDs (Thiazolidinediones)
  7. Sulfonylureas
  8. Meglitinides
  9. SGLT2 Inhibitors
  10. Alpha-Glucosidase Inhibitors
  11. Pramlintide (Amylin Analogs)


Amylin Analogs are a class of medications that notably includes the drug pramlintide. These drugs are used to treat diabetes mellitus, including both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. As their name suggests, amylin analogs work by mimicking the effects of amylin in the body, which acts in several ways, including decreasing glucagon release by the pancreas, decreasing gastric emptying into the intestines, and increasing satiety. The net result is a decrease in blood sugar levels that helps to treat diabetes mellitus. While these drugs do not directly cause hypoglycemia when taken alone, they greatly increase the risk of hypoglycemia when taken with insulin or insulin-releasing drugs. Amylin analogs can also cause nausea and vomiting as a side effect. Finally, amylin analogs are associated with weight loss in patients.

Key Points

  • Amylin Analogs
    • Drug Names
      • Pramlintide
    • Mechanism
      • Man-made imitation of amylin hormone
        • Amylin is a small peptide hormone released into the bloodstream by beta cells of the pancreas along with insulin
        • Works to reduce blood sugar levels
      • Decreases glucagon release
      • Delays gastric emptying
        • Increases satiety
    • Clinical Use
      • Treats diabetes mellitus
        • Used for both type 1 and type 2 diabetes mellitus
    • Side Effects
      • Hypoglycemia (when combined with insulin)
        • While pramlintide does not cause hypoglycemia when used in isolation, it can increase the risk of hypoglycemia when combined with insulin or insulin-releasing drugs
      • Nausea/vomiting
        • Typically experienced in the first weeks after beginning the drug; resolves with continued use