Teva makes only approved migraine patch available in the U.S.

Zecuity patch--Courtesy of Teva

Teva ($TEVA) announced that the first and only approved migraine patch has been made available in the U.S. through specialty pharmacies.

Zecuity is worn on the upper arm or thigh for 4 hours for transdermal delivery of sumatriptan. One advantage of the delivery route is a reduction in nausea because the drug avoids the gut.

Availability comes more than two years after FDA approval (and four years after an initial rejection for skin reactions to the patch). The Israeli generics giant cited a clinical study in support of its drug delivery device, which found that it beat a nonmedicated patch at tricks like reducing or eliminating headache pain and cutting sensitivity to sound and light.

"Migraine sufferers experiencing nausea as part of their migraine may delay or avoid treatment and may seek non-oral treatment options," said Teva chief scientific officer Dr. Michael Hayden, in a statement. "At Teva, we are committed to delivering innovative treatments that improve patient care and are proud to offer Zecuity to people looking for a different route to migraine relief."

The combination product was approved via the drug regulatory pathway in January 2013 by NuPathe. The company was acquired by Teva about a year later for about $114 million, after it outbid rival Endo ($ENDP).

In June 2014, Teva spent $200 million in cash and up to $625 million more in milestones to buy out Labrys Biologics and an experimental migraine drug that the newly reorganized company bullishly believes can hit up to $3 billion in annual sales. At the time, Teva highlighted recent late-stage data for its tamper-proof version of the pain drug hydrocodone, and said it is complementary to Zecuity.

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