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The discovery and development of inhaled therapeutics for migraine

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Nicolas Vandenbussche, Peter J. Goadsby

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)591-599
Number of pages9
JournalExpert Opinion On Drug Discovery
Issue number6
Early online date29 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019

King's Authors


Introduction: Migraine is a disabling primary headache disorder that requires effective treatments. Inhalation is currently being explored for the delivery of drugs for migraine. Pulmonary-route delivery of drugs shows potential advantages for its use as a treatment, particularly compared the oral route. Areas covered: The authors highlight the current state of the literature and review multiple therapies for migraine-utilizing inhalation as the route of administration. The following therapeutics are discussed: inhaled ergotamine, inhaled dihydroergotamine mesylate (MAP0004), inhaled prochlorperazine, and inhaled loxapine. Coverage is also given to normobaric oxygen, hyperbaric oxygen, and nitrous oxide therapies. Expert opinion: Inhalation of MAP0004 showed promising results in terms of efficacy for acute migraine treatment in phase 3 studies, together with a more favorable tolerability profile compared to parenteral dosing and a better pharmacokinetic profile versus oral or intranasal delivery. In phase 2 trials, inhaled prochlorperazine shows good pharmacokinetics and efficacy, in contrast to inhaled loxapine that did not provide encouraging results in terms of efficacy. The authors see the potential for the use of dihydroergotamine mesylate in clinical practice pending regulatory approval.

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