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Key figures Diabetes


Diabetes, a rising public health issue

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 9% of adults 18 years and older worldwide were living with diabetes in 2014. What’s more, the disease was responsible for some 1.5 million deaths in 20121. Type 2 diabetes accounts for 90% of cases worldwide2.

This translates into over 400 million diabetics across the globe3.

Diabetes poses more of a public health concern than ever before, especially in developing countries. This is largely due to the rise of obesity and sedentary lifestyles. No less than three-quarters of diabetics live in low- and middle-income countries.


Understanding diabetes

Diabetes is essentially a chronic disease caused by either a lack of insulin – the hormone regulating blood sugar (glucose) – in the body (type 1) or the inability of the body to use the insulin the pancreas produces (type 2). These both lead to increased blood sugar, or hyperglycemia. The effects of diabetes are numerous and severe: increased risk of cardiovascular diseases, kidney failure, foot ulcer, blindness.

Insulin, Glucose and You:



Living with diabetes:

“The shock wasn’t the diagnosis, as I wasn’t old enough to understand: it was having to do the daily injections,” he recalled. “Often, the parents are sad that their child has been diagnosed. But I try to make them realize that it’s not the end of the world, and that diabetes is never going to hold a person back. If it’s managed well, you can do anything.” Eshaan, a 19-year-old engineering student from Pune, India, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the young age of 12.

Marion, a young woman with a passion for mountaineering, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 10.

Watch her testimony:



Sanofi on the frontline

“Also, today I have a lot of people living with diabetes among my family and friends so knowing that I'm working for them trying to find a new therapy is both inspiring and fulfilling.” Martin Bossart, PhD, Research scientist, Insulin & Peptides – Sanofi Diabetes.

Sanofi is committed to working to address the diabetes public health concern worldwide through its integrated treatments and medical devices.


Frankfurt, the insulin city

Sanofi has invested more than €1 billion over 10 years in its largest industrial complex in the world just outside Frankfurt, Germany. Moreover, it recently inaugurated a €75 million high-tech building designed to produce a new type of insulin to treat around 6 million patients. It houses the most modern technology, enabling Sanofi to achieve the highest sterility standards in the industry.



Partnering to deliver integrated care for better patient outcome

We believe that strategic partnerships with are key to successfully treating diseases such as diabetes. In this spirit, on November 2015, we have teamed up with Korean Hanmi Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. to develop a portfolio of experimental, long-acting diabetes treatments. This allows us to expand its portfolio to cover medicines that are administered weekly as well as daily. Meanwhile, we are collaborating with Lexicon Pharmaceuticals for the development and commercialization of sotagliflozin, an investigational new oral therapy (SGLT-1 and SGLT-2), which could be a potential treatment option for people with diabetes.

In addition to this, driven by the strong commitment to truly patient-centered, integrated diabetes management, Sanofi is collaborating with the life sciences team at Google to improve care and outcomes for people with types 1 and 2 diabetes by driving convergence of science and technology, and developing new tools to better collect, analyze and understand the multiple sources of information impacting diabetes. 

The two companies hope to capitalize on new technologies emerging to monitor a patient’s health continuously in real time, providing more proactive and effective ways to control diabetes.


Beyond medication, engaging with civil society

Sanofi is actively involved in civil society initiatives around the world and partnerships with local health authorities and NGOs to improve the diagnosis of diabetes and patient knowledge as well as to train health professionals. To learn more about our main programs, click on the interactive map below:


Access to the map about Sanofi's main programs in the world



A longstanding Commitment

Through its patient outreach and support, Sanofi actively participates in the prevention of diabetes, which remains a threat to future generations. For nearly 90 years, the Group has been working to improve the lives of patients through innovation. Today, Sanofi is able to provide overall health solutions and customized services to people with diabetes.


For the availability of our healthcare solutions in your country, please consult your local Sanofi website.


Through time

Sanofi has been involved in treating diabetes for nearly a century and is at the origin of some of the major scientific and medical advances that have helped transform the lives of patients.


Access to the Diabetes history



  1. WHO,
  2. WHO,
  3. IDF,