Neurology Central

Toward mechanism-based treatment of migraine: spotlight on CGRP

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Considering calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) as a biomarker of migraine formed a hypothesis that blockade of CGRP would treat migraine. Triptans yielded supportive outcome where headache resolution occurred at the same time of reducing CGRP levels. Exogenous administration of CGRP also triggered a migraine. Targeting CGRP receptor then turned out to be effective, but elevated levels of hepatic enzymes led to trials’ termination. Failure kept the idea alive that targeting CGRP – if it can be done safely – may still carry a potential for migraine treatment. Four new antibody-based drugs are under development that either neutralize CGRP or its receptor. Next trials may reveal if this class of drugs, developed for prevention of migraine, would be sufficiently safe and effective for long-term treatment.

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