April 29, 2022

Important peptide clarification

Several members wrote to us after reading last week’s story about compounding peptides to ask “Why are semaglutide and sermorelin exceptions to the peptide rule?”

A good question! For the answer, we reached out to APC Vice President Tenille Davis, PharmD, of Civic Center Pharmacy in Scottsdale. Here’s what she told us:

Sermorelin and semaglutide meet the criteria for compounding because they are part of an FDA approved drug product — one of three criteria we use to determine if an API is eligible to be used in compounding. They are not considered biologics (which we cannot compound) because they contain fewer than 40 amino acids in their sequence.

Keep in mind that we cannot compound a copy of a commercially available medication, but if a patient needed semaglutide in a nasal spray, for example, it would be legal to compound it.

Think of them as commonly used peptides that we compound with, like oxytocin. Oxytocin is a peptide hormone but it is not a biologic.