Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals brings a little German drugmaking know-how to the USA. The firm is the pharmaceuticals unit of Boehringer Ingelheim Corporation, which is the US headquarters of Germany's Boehringer Ingelheim. It sells a range of drugs in the US market, including prescription products (respiratory treatment Spiriva, high blood pressure medication Micardis, enlarged prostate treatment Flomax, Parkinson's disease drug Mirapex, and HIV/AIDS product Aptivus) and over-the-counter products (heartburn aid Zantac and constipation drug Ducolax). It is also an R&D center for Boehringer Ingelheim, specializing in immunology, inflammatory conditions, and cardiovascular disease.
The cardiovascular disease department is focused on new treatments for heart failure, hypertension, and atherosclerosis (a thickening of the arterial wall). The immunology and inflammation department seeks to uncover the mechanisms responsible for rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, and psoriasis.
Collaborations with other drugmakers have helped the company bring products to market. After developing type 2 diabetes treatment linagliptin, Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals teamed up with Eli Lilly to see it through FDA approval and on to commercial release in 2011 under the brand name Tradjenta.
The company also expands by developing and launching its own products; for example, it first launched Mirapex as a treatment for restless legs syndrome, then in 2010 received approval for using it in treating Parkinson's disease. In late 2012 it introduced Combivent Respimat, a propellant-free inhaler version of an existing product.
Mergers and Acquisitions
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Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals has also expanded its pipeline through acquisitions, such as the purchase of the US rights to over-the-counter gastrointestinal treatment Zantac from Johnson & Johnson/Pfizer at a cost of more than half a billion dollars.