Boehringer Ingelheim's latest investigational treatment slowed lung function decline in people living with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis

  • Promising 12-week Phase II trial data with BI 1015550, a novel investigational phosphodiesterase 4B (PDE4B) inhibitor, published in The New England Journal of Medicine
  • Potential new treatment for progressive pulmonary fibrosis (PPF) builds on Boehringer Ingelheim’s leadership in lung fibrosis and will be further investigated in a phase III clinical trial program
  • New treatments are needed to complement existing therapies and to help stop, rather than slow, disease progression

BURLINGTON, ON, May 15, 2022 /CNW/ – Today, Boehringer Ingelheim (Canada) Ltd. announced Phase II data for BI 1015550, a novel investigational phosphodiesterase 4B (PDE4B) inhibitor, that was published in The New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM). The promising 12-week data that showed a reduction in the rate of lung function decline in patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) will also be presented at the American Thoracic Society (ATS) International Conference Breaking News session on May 16 in San Francisco.1

“These encouraging, early data showed that treatment with BI 1015550 slowed the rate of lung function decline in patients who were not on approved antifibrotics, as well as those who were taking existing antifibrotic therapy,” commented Luca Richeldi, Professor of Respiratory Medicine at the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore in Rome, Italy, and the Principal Investigator on the trial.

The primary endpoint of the trial was the change from baseline in forced vital capacity (FVC) – meaning the maximum amount of air (measured in mL) that can be forcibly exhaled from the lungs after fully inhaling – at week 12. Median changes for patients taking BI 1015550 showed a slight improvement in FVC, and in those who took placebo, FVC was reduced:1

  • The median changes in FVC in patients who were not on approved antifibrotics were +5.7 mL for BI 1015550 and -81.7 mL for placebo.
  • In patients already taking antifibrotic therapy, the median changes in FVC were +2.7 mL for BI 1015550 and -59.2 mL in the placebo arm.
  • There is >98% probability that BI 1015550 was superior to placebo in slowing down the worsening of lung function in people with IPF.

“As the global market leader in pulmonary fibrosis, we have the ambition to go beyond slowing down disease progression and hope to one day provide a cure for this chronic debilitating condition,” said Carinne Brouillon, Member of the Board of Managing Directors and Head of Human Pharma, Boehringer Ingelheim. “The phase II results reinforce our confidence in BI 1015550 which will be accelerated into a pivotal phase III program. We will work with regulatory agencies and scientific communities to potentially bring the next generation of treatments to people living with pulmonary fibrosis as quickly as possible.”  

The trial also met its secondary endpoint,1 demonstrating that BI 1015550 showed acceptable safety and tolerability in IPF patients over 12 weeks. Diarrhea was the most frequently reported event in all patients (>10% of patients) and all events were reported as non-serious. No new safety topics were identified, and baseline characteristics were generally balanced across both treatment groups.

BI 1015550 was granted Breakthrough Therapy Designation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in February 2022. Boehringer Ingelheim will be initiating a Phase III clinical trial program to further investigate if BI 1015550 improves lung function in people with IPF and other forms of PPF, with the ambition to bring this medicine to patients as soon as possible.

About the trial
  • The Phase II randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study (NCT04419506) investigated the efficacy and safety of oral BI 1015550, 18 mg twice daily, in patients with IPF (n=147)
  • Patients with FVC ≥45% predicted, who were either not on antifibrotic therapy or were on a stable dose of antifibrotic therapy for at least 8 weeks before study entry, were randomized 2:1 to receive either BI 1015550 18 mg twice daily or placebo for 12 weeks
  • The primary endpoint was change in baseline in FVC at week 12 and the secondary endpoint was the proportion of patients with treatment-emergent adverse events during the trial
  • Initiation of the Phase III program is expected later this year:
    • NCT05321082: in patients with Progressive Fibrosing Interstitial Lung Disease (PF-ILD)
    • NCT05321069: in patients with IPF
About IPF

Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is one of the more common forms of progressive pulmonary fibrosis.2 Symptoms of IPF include breathlessness during activity, a dry and persistent cough, chest discomfort, fatigue and weakness.3 Although considered “rare,” IPF affects approximately 3 million people worldwide.4,5 The disease primarily affects patients over the age of 50 and affects more men than women.2

There are more than 200 lung disorders that can lead to pulmonary fibrosis6 – an irreversible scarring of lung tissue that negatively impacts lung function, quality of life and may become life-threatening.

About Boehringer Ingelheim (Canada) Ltd.

Boehringer Ingelheim is working on breakthrough therapies that transform lives, today and for generations to come. As a leading research-driven biopharmaceutical company, the company creates value through innovation in areas of high unmet medical need. Founded in 1885 and family-owned ever since, Boehringer Ingelheim takes a long-term perspective. More than 52,000 employees serve over 130 markets in the three business areas, Human Pharma, Animal Health, and Biopharmaceutical Contract Manufacturing. The Canadian headquarters of Boehringer Ingelheim was established in 1972 in Montreal, Quebec and is now located in Burlington, Ontario. Boehringer Ingelheim employs approximately 500 people across Canada. Learn more at



1 Richeldi L., et al. Safety and Efficacy of BI 1015550, a Preferential Inhibitor of Phosphodiesterase 4B, in Patients with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis: a Phase 2 Trial. Presented at American Thoracic Society (ATS) International Conference Breaking News session on May 16 2022.

2 Pulmonary Fibrosis Types and Causes. American Lung Association. [Accessed May 2022].

3 Symptoms. Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation. [Accessed May 2022].

4 Nalysnyk L., et al. Incidence and Prevalence of Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis: Review of the Literature. Eur Respir Rev. 2012;21(126):355-361.

5 Data on file. Boehringer Ingelheim. DOF OFEV.RES.IPF/08/11January2016. Worldwide Prevalence 2016.

6 Other Types of Pulmonary Fibrosis. Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation. [Accessed May 2022].


SOURCE Boehringer Ingelheim (Canada) Ltd.

Boehringer Ingelheim's latest investigational treatment slowed lung function decline in people living with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis WeeklyReviewer

PR Newswire Technology News

World Reviewer Staff
World Reviewer Staff
The first logical thought has to be "no way". I'm the World Observer! Ill find and share important news all day.

Latest articles

Earnings Disclosure

WeeklyReviewer earns primarily through affiliates and ads. We don’t encourage anyone to click on ads for any other purpose but your own. We recommend products and services often for our readers, and through many we will earn commissions through affiliate programs.

Related articles