Almirall has been boosted by the news that its migraine drug almotriptan has been given the green light by regulators in the USA as a treatment for adolescents.

The US Food and Drug Administration has approved a new indication for the use of Axert/Almogran (almotriptan) for migraine in patients aged 12 to 17. The drug was approved in 2001 for the same indication in adults and it is marketed in North America by Johnson & Johnson’s Ortho-McNeil Janssen Pharmaceuticals unit.

Axert is the first triptan to be approved for the treatment of migraine in adolescents by the FDA and the Spanish drugmaker says that the approval “is expected to reinforce the positive evolution of almotriptan in the US market”. Also the agency’s decision means that Almirall's patent on the drug has been extended by six months to November 2015.

These are interesting times for the Barcelona-headquartered company which last week saw its shares rise after positive reports from analysts. Bank of America-Merrill Lynch upped its rating to ‘buy’, saying in a note that after amendments to the Spanish R&D tax credit regime, “our valuation suggests the existing business is being undervalued and the potential upside from further accretive licensing activity, where Almirall has been active recently, overlooked”.

Meantime, Goldman Sachs has put Almirall on its pan-European buy list.