Novo Nordisk has showcased new data from two Phase IIIb trials showing that diabetes patients treated with Tresiba experienced significantly lower rates of several types of hypoglycaemia than those using Sanofi's Lantus.

Hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar) is a very serious issue for diabetes patients, at best causing mild discomfort with sweating and dizziness and, at worst, severe confusion, loss of consciousness and death.

On average, people with type I diabetes experience two episodes of symptomatic hypoglycaemia per week and people with type II diabetes at least one episode per fortnight, with almost 50 percent of all types of hypos occurring during the night, highlighting the need for new treatment options.

The SWITCH trials are the first-ever double-blinded crossover basal insulin studies, evaluating the safety and efficacy of Tresiba (insulin degludec) compared to Sanofi's Lantus (insulin glargine) in patients at high risk of hypoglycaemia.

Novo said that data from the trials, presented at the annual Scientific Sessions of the American Diabetes Association, showed significantly lower rates of severe or blood-glucose confirmed symptomatic hypoglycaemia and nocturnal hypoglycaemia in patients with both type I and type II diabetes taking Tresiba versus those taking Lantus.

"The SWITCH results add important new evidence to the overall body of data supporting the use of insulin degludec for people living with type I or type II diabetes who experience problematic hypoglycaemia - and provide additional clinical approaches in this important group of patients," noted Dr Simon Heller, Professor of Clinical Diabetes at Sheffield University.

Tresiba received its first regulatory approval in September 2012 and has since been cleared for use in more than 60 countries globally.