Statistics show that approximately 36 million people in the United States suffer from migraine headaches, while 3.2 million experience severe migraine headaches a minimum of 15 days each month. Now, four pharmaceutical companies have drugs in development that strive to fully relieve these episodes. Alder, Amgen, Lilly, and Teva are working to create blockers for calcitonin gene-related peptides, or CGRP's, which cause pain and inflammation when they bind to a receptor.
In 2014, early trials of CGRP-targeted drugs found a 66 percent reduction in migraine days. The four companies currently developing these therapies have also had promising results; all experimental drugs have reduced migraine days by a minimum of half for at least 50 percent of patients. Teva has achieved success in treating both episodic and chronic migraines, though Lilly has already begun late-stage trials.