A drug in its early phases—dubbed NGX426 for now —is showing some promise of being able to reduce the pain and other symptoms of migraine—including allodynia—without affecting the vascular system. Its developer, Raptor Pharmaceutical Corporation, shared data from a small study at the 12th International Conference on the Mechanisms and Treatment of Neuropathic Pain, held November 20-21 in San Francisco.
The double-blind, randomized study involved 18 subjects and found that NGX426 showed statistically significant relief of spontaneous pain, hyperalgesia (increased sensitivity to pain) and allodynia as compared to placebo. “We are hopeful that once released this data will further demonstrate the potential value of NGX426 in the treatment of migraine and chronic pain,” said Christopher M. Starr, PhD, Raptor’s Chief Executive Officer.
NGX426 is an AMPA/kainite receptor antagonist, which means it selectively blocks the transmission of pain signals that arise through the activation of a type of receptors located on neurons. These receptors play a critical role in the development of central sensitization, a phenomenon involved in many pain syndromes including migraine. NGX426 offers a unique mechanism of analgesia that is non-narcotic and non-vascular in approach and its developers hope it will relieve pain without affecting the cardiovascular system or interacting with serotonin receptors, thereby offering an effective alternative for migraine sufferers for whom triptans are contraindicated.