Exenatide is the first glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist approved for the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Exenatide lowers blood glucose through multiple mechanisms, including enhancement of glucose-dependent insulin secretion, suppression of excess glucagon secretion, reduction of food intake and slowing of gastric emptying. The current formulation of exenatide requires twice-daily dosing (exenatide BID), and an extended-release formulation of exenatide is now in development for use as a once-weekly injection (exenatide QW). The purpose of this report is to review the most current clinical data on the development of exenatide QW for the treatment of T2DM. In clinical trials, exenatide QW significantly improved glycemic control, resulted in patient weight loss, and was well tolerated in patients with T2DM. In a head-to-head clinical trial, exenatide QW caused greater improvements in glycemic control and was better tolerated than exenatide BID. Given the rapidly increasing prevalence of diabetes and obesity worldwide, exenatide QW is a promising development candidate for the treatment of T2DM.