September 28, 2018 / 12:04 AM / 3 months ago

U.S. FDA approves Lilly migraine drug; price same as rivals

NEW YORK, Sept 27 (Reuters) - Eli Lilly and Co on Thursday said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved its migraine drug Emgality, marking the third approval from a promising new class of treatments for the often debilitating headaches.

Lilly said it plans to sell the drug, known chemically as galcanezumab, at a list price of $6,900 a year, or $575 month. That is identical to the list prices for the other new migraine treatments, Aimovig from Amgen Inc and Novartis AG , and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd's Ajovy.

The three medicines, most commonly administered as monthly self-injections, belong to a class of biotech drugs known as CGRP inhibitors that block a protein involved in setting off migraines. CGRP, or calcitonin gene-related peptide, is believed to be involved in the migraine process, such as dilation of blood vessels in the brain.

Reporting by Michael Erman in New York and Aakash Jagadeesh Babu in Bengaluru Editing by Bill Berkrot and Leslie Adler

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