10. Immunologics for migraine prophylaxis
Migraines affect 14.7% of the world population, according to the Migraine Trust. Multi-purpose drugs such as blood pressure medication, antidepressants, anti-seizure drugs and Botox injects have typically been used to prevent migraines.
In 2018, new medications for migraines were introduced to head off migraine pain, according to the Cleveland Clinic. The drugs work by blocking the activity of the calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) molecule, which increases during migraines.
“These drugs are designed specifically to treat migraines, which is unique. Most of our other medications were not designed to treat migraines,” Dr. MaryAnn Mays, Cleveland Clinic neurology staff member, said during the virtual Medical Innovation Summit.
The new drugs were actively prescribed in 2020 and they are the first to be specifically designed for the preventative treatment of migraines, marking a new era of migraine therapeutics.
“CGRP was found to be an important molecule back in the 1990s. It took a long time to come to market to get a drug that was therapeutic,” Mays said. “CGRP is a neuropeptide. It’s very important for the peripheral and central nervous system.”