Pennington Biomedical to Conduct Glycemic Control Study for Patients Living with Diabetes

November 9, 2023

VITAL-CGM study, to evaluate effects of data provided by use of a continuous glucose monitor paired with behavioral weight management using WeightWatchers Diabetes Program

For more information, contact Joe Coussan,, 225-763-3049

BATON ROUGE – Pennington Biomedical researchers, led by Associate Executive Director of Population and Public Health Sciences Dr. Peter Katzmarzyk, with support from WeightWatchers, will launch a study to evaluate a behavioral weight management program with the use of a continuous glucose monitor, or CGM, in individuals with Type 2 diabetes.

Participants’ glycemic control will be monitored for a year with CGMs, provided to them at no charge. By pairing their CGM to the WeightWatchers app, study participants will track and gain insights into how nutrition and activity impact their glucose levels.                                                  

“It’s possible to reverse or prevent Type 2 diabetes through improved glycemic control and weight loss,” said Dr. Katzmarzyk, who is Principal Investigator on the study. “Given the potential impact on the lives of those with Type 2 diabetes, I am excited to collaborate with WeightWatchers, a leading weight health program that has positively impacted millions of lives.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that about one in ten Americans have diabetes, with more than 90 percent of that population having Type 2 diabetes. For those Americans, finding the right balance between a healthy lifestyle and enjoying their favorite foods can be a challenge. With the help of WeightWatchers coaches, tools, and resources, participants in the Vital-CGM study’s intervention group will be guided through a healthy lifestyle regime informed by the remotely generated results of the CGM.

“At Pennington Biomedical, we are committed to improving health across the lifespan, identifying the triggers of chronic disease like Type 2 diabetes,” said Dr. John Kirwan, Executive Director of Pennington Biomedical. “Our collaborations with partners like WeightWatchers combine our leading state-of-the-art research with the reach and distribution of leaders in the field.”

The study is currently open to U.S. residents over the age of 18 with Type 2 diabetes and a BMI greater than 25.0 but lower than 50.0. Participants must have access to a smartphone or tablet to download the WeightWatchers App. They must be willing to be randomly assigned to either the intervention group or the usual care group. Those in the intervention group must be willing to wear a CGM for the duration of the study, which is 12 months. Compensation for participation is $225 upon successful completion of the study. The use of a CGM monitor and access to the WeightWatchers program are provided at no cost. Those interested in participating can visit

Pennington Biomedical has previously collaborated with WeightWatchers to test its new programs through clinical studies, including the efficacy of the WeightWatchers Diabetes program.

About the Pennington Biomedical Research Center
The Pennington Biomedical Research Center is at the forefront of medical discovery as it relates to understanding the triggers of obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer and dementia. The Center architected the national “Obecity, USA” awareness and advocacy campaign to help solve the obesity epidemic by 2040. The Center conducts basic, clinical, and population research, and is affiliated with LSU.

The research enterprise at Pennington Biomedical includes over 480 employees within a network of 40 clinics and research laboratories, and 13 highly specialized core service facilities. Its scientists and physician/scientists are supported by research trainees, lab technicians, nurses, dietitians, and other support personnel. Pennington Biomedical a state-of-the-art research facility on a 222-acre campus in Baton Rouge.

For more information, see