Breakthrough drug may be essential in stopping migraines even before they start: Study

Updated On : 03 Dec , 2017 , 09:50 PM
New drug may stop migraines before they start: Study
New drug may stop migraines before they start: Study
New Delhi:

All the people out there who suffer from chronic migraines, you need to read this. A team of researchers have identified a drug which can thwart the severe headache before it starts. This is certainly a good piece of news for those have to bear the constant migraines.

The antibody therapy against a key inflammatory molecule which is involved in migraines reduces the number of headaches a patient suffers in a month in a phase III trial.

As per Stephen D Silberstein, from United States’ Thomas Jefferson University, "This therapeutic approach offers new hope for people whose migraines cannot be treated with existing medicine".

The drug which is called as Fremanezumab is a biological agent which binds to and blocks the action of a migraine-associated protein called calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP). The increasing evidence of its importance in migraines has ensured that CGRP becomes a focal point of research and drug development.

The peptide which is released at high levels during a migraine in response to inflammation triggers a cascade effect which stimulates the release of more CGRP. This actually results in increasing the sensitivity of the brain to pain.

The doctors hope to break the cycle of increasing the inflammation and escalated pain sensitivity by blocking this peptide. The very same pain increasing sensitive causes migraines in people. 

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As per an estimation by The World Health Organization (WHO), 127 to 300 million people all across the world suffer from chronic migraine, which is defined as experiencing 15 or more headaches every month.

In order to conduct the research, the team of scientists enrolled 1,130 patients and divided them into groups of three.

The first group was given quarterly treatments, while the second group received one treatment every month. The third group received placebo injections. The trial was conducted for a period of 16 weeks, with a 12-week window treatment.

The findings indicated that treatment with fremanezumab helped in reducing the number of days a patient experienced headache by an average of 4.3 days with quarterly treatment. When the patient received monthly treatment, the rate of reduction was 4.6 days.

The researchers also analysed how well the therapy worked in relation to each patient’s headache burden.

The study was published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

(With PTI Inputs)

First Published : Sunday, December 03, 2017 08:54 PM
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