Migraine is a new, comprehensive, multiclient study published by Decision Resources, Inc. Based on interviews with international headache experts, this study covers the pathophysiological mechanisms that researchers believe are involved in migraine as well as the clinical course of the disease. We provide epidemiological estimates of the total population of migraineurs in the seven major pharmaceutical markets (United States, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, and Japan) and estimate the percentage of diagnosed and drug-treated patients in each market. We also assess promising emerging therapies and investigational approaches to migraine that will impact the market through 2009.

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Despite the availability of numerous 5-HT agonists (e.g., Glaxo Wellcome's sumatriptan [Imitrex]) and OTC analgesics, the migraine market remains of keen interest in the pharmaceutical industry for the following reasons:

  -- The large patient population.  Migraine is strikingly common:   prevalence exceeds 10% in most of the major markets, for a total of   approximately 68.6 million prevalent cases in 1999, a number we expect   will remain relatively constant throughout our study period.   -- The frequency of migraine attacks.  We estimate the total number of   migraine episodes in 1999 exceeded 1.1 billion.   -- The large, untapped undiagnosed population.  Population-based studies   of migraineurs in several countries consistently indicate that less than   half of migraineurs have been diagnosed.   -- The need for therapies that provide complete and sustained pain relief.   -- The need for therapies that provide faster pain relief.   -- The need for more-effective, more-tolerable prophylactic agents.  None   of the available prophylactic agents (e.g., antidepressants, beta   blockers, and the anticonvulsant valproic acid) elicits a response in more   than 50-60% of patients.   -- The need for less expensive therapies. Available (and emerging)   triptans are so similar in terms of safety and efficacy that pricing will   be a major consideration in their choice of agent.  Cost will increasingly   influence formulary inclusion and reimbursement status as well.  

Undaunted by the competition in the triptan market, three other developers are poised to launch 5-HT agonists in the U.S. and European markets by the end of 2001: Pfizer's eletriptan (Relpax), Pharmacia/Almirall Prodesfarma's almotriptan (Axert), and Elan/Vernalis's frovatriptan (Miguard). The prophylactic market, by contrast, is relatively impoverished-no effective and tolerable drug therapy is available. Therefore, any such treatment appropriate for even a small niche of the prophylactic market-the triptans, for example, in menstrual migraine-will garner commercial reward. Prescription drugs to treat migraine generated approximately $1.9 billion in sales in 1999 in the seven markets under study. We expect this number to grow to $3.1 billion by 2009 as a result of increases in the diagnosed population of migraineurs and more widespread use of the triptans.

Migraine is part of Cognos, one of six Pharmacor services that evaluate the commercial potential of drugs in research and development.

Decision Resources, Inc., is a world leader in research publications, advisory services, and consulting designed to help clients shape strategy, allocate resources, and master their chosen markets. Founded as a subsidiary of Arthur D. Little, Inc., the company has provided strategic information services for 30 years, assessing industry trends in the international health care and pharmaceutical industries.

Contact: Frank Sama, 781.487.3753 (telephone), 781.487.5750 (fax), or sama@dresources.com (e-mail). In Europe, contact Francoise Bidart, +32.2.351.4082 (telephone), +32.2.351.2347 (fax), or fbidart@decisionresources.be (e-mail). In Japan, contact Makiko Yoshimoto, +81.3.5401.2615 (telephone), +81.3.5401.2617 (fax), or makiko@bl.mmtr.or.jp (e-mail).

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SOURCE: Decision Resources, Inc.

Contact: Frank Sama of Decision Resources, Inc, 781-487-3753,

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