For The First Time In Decades, A Drug For Migraines Shows Promise

For The First Time In Decades, A Drug For Migraines Shows Promise

For The First Time In Decades, A Drug For Migraines Shows Promise

Those who received the Erenumab injection reported that the frequency and severity of their migraine headaches were reduced by half.

Although the drug is yet to go into mass production researchers say they are hopeful that it will be introduced in the near future as the latest trials have shown that the drug can be beneficial to those who suffer with the crippling illness.

For six months, they were given monthly shots into the abdomen of a high dose of the drug, a low dose or a dummy medicine.

Although there are no non-prescription cures for migraine, there are studies working on one, while others are calling for migraine medicine to be made available over the counter.

Compared with placebo, people taking erenumab 70mg were 2.13 times as likely to have their migraine days fall by half (odds ratio (OR) 2.13, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.52 to 2.98) and those taking erenumab 140mg were 2.81 times as likely (OR 2.81, 95% CI 2.01 to 3.94). One third got the drug each time, another third got the drug the first time and then dummy shots the next two times, and the rest got dummy shots each time.

The two new drugs are monoclonal antibodies.

Erenumab is an antibody that alters signaling pathways in the brain called calcitonin gene-related peptide or CGRP in order to prevent migraine attacks.

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A total of 955 patients took part in the STRIVE study, and they were randomized to receive placebo or subcutaneous Aimovig 140mg or 70mg once monthly for 6 months.

Additionally, the data showed that erenumab patients had their migraine days cut by at least half - almost a threefold better performance than placebo - and reported reduced physical impairment and improved ability to participate in daily activities. The second group received monthly fremanezumab with a starting dose of 675 mg and then 225 mg for the second and third month. Only 18 percent of those who received placebo showed a similar reduction in symptoms.

During some migraine attacks, increased concentrations of CGRP can be found in both saliva and plasma drawn from the external jugular vein.

At baseline, the quarterly group reported a mean of 13.2 headache days, the monthly group reported a mean of 12.8 days, and the placebo group reported a mean of 13.3 days.

The study, led by Dr. Peter Goadsby of King's College London, in England, defined those migraines as ones that occur from four to 15 days a month.

This is a good-quality study that holds promise for a treatment that may help people who have migraines. These could be targeting the migraine trigger he said and that is a novel mechanism of action. Multiple drug companies are working on developing antibodies that can neutralize CGRP.

The drugs are the first preventive medicines developed specifically for migraines. Fremanezumab would be used in persons who have chronic migraines with 15 or more attacks a month.

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