New Haven-based pharmaceutical company releases new migraine meds as many experience pandemic stress


NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Do you suffer from migraines? If so, you might be getting them more frequently during the pandemic. You’re not alone. One New Haven-based pharmaceutical company has recently released a new medication in a time when many of us are experiencing much more stress than normal.

According to the American Migraine Foundation, stress is a trigger for almost 70% of people with migraines.

In late February, the FDA approved the migraine medication ‘Nurtec’ which was developed by New Haven’s Biohaven Pharmaceuticals.

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“We launched the drug the first week of the [COVID-19] pandemic and so we were able to get this out there for patients in a time of real intense need because stress can worsen migraines,” said CEO of Biohaven Vlad Coric. “The timing was right and we’ve done very well with the launch.”

Shares of Biohaven have nearly double. And it looks like more things are on the horizon according to Coric.

“I think we’re just at the beginning of the Biohaven story. It starts with Nurtec and migraines, but we have an upcoming [drug] for Alzheimer’s Disease at the end of the year.”

And there might be something else on the horizon.

“We’ve actually started a COVID-19 study looking at the lung inflammation that causes complications in COVID. When COVID hit, we felt it was our responsibility to try and do something to improve those patients,” Coric said.

Another tongue-twister: Zavegapant.

It’s an exciting time for the company, which has hired Khloe Kardashian to promote its migraine drug.

“It came to my attention that Khloe Kardashian suffered from migraines. And when our treatment got approved, we reached out to her. When I talked to Khloe, she talked about having migraines since she was in the sixth grade and it really affected her throughout her life.”

Coric called her response to the drug “amazing.” A working relationship was formed.

Another product being developed has the potential to be amazing, as well.

“The same drug that was approved for acute, we now are filing with the FDA for prevention,” Coric explained. “So, this is the first time we have a migraine treatment that could both treat your episode right now, but then also prevent the next one. And we’re waiting for the FDA to see if that one gets approved.”

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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