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New vaccine against Bovine Viral Diarrhea: Boehringer Ingelheim receives European marketing authorization for Bovela®

* Bovela® is a new vaccine registered in the European Union to protect cattle against Bovine Viral Diarrhea (BVD) Virus.
* BVD is one of the most common viral diseases in cattle all over the world.
* Launch of Bovela® is planned for spring 2015.

Ingelheim, Germany – WEBWIRE

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has approved Boehringer Ingelheim’s Bovela®, a new vaccine for active immunization of cattle against the virus causing the severe cattle disease Bovine Viral Diarrhea (BVD). The launch of Bovela® is planned for spring 2015. Bovela® is an important advance in safeguarding the health of cattle against one of the major cattle diseases with worldwide distribution. It reduces clinical signs and prevents the birth of so called persistently infected (PI) animals caused by transplacental infection. PI animals are considered the main reason why this disease is still perpetuated. Bovela®, moreover, is the first vaccine registered in the European Union containing both genotypes of the BVD virus (BVDV-1 and BVDV-2).

“The European marketing authorization for Bovela® marks an important step to control BVD”, explains Dr Joachim Hasenmaier, responsible for the Corporate Board Divisions Animal Health and Consumer Healthcare at Boehringer Ingelheim. “Our long-term objective is to provide worldwide protection against this disease and to reduce the number of infected cattle significantly. Therefore, we plan to launch Bovela® in important cattle farming regions all over the world in the following years.”

BVD – like any viral disease – is not treatable. Affected animals suffer severely from the infection. The disease can cause a variety of clinical symptoms, including immunosuppression (i.e. the reduced activity of the immune system to fight back other pathogens), infertility, abortions and congenital defects in calves. Some animals may develop a more severe condition known as mucosal disease, the result of which is a high mortality rate in affected animals.

BVD also has a heavy economic impact on cattle farmers due to decreased weight gain, decreased milk production, reproductive losses, or even the death of the infected animals. Most of the animals show symptoms that can be confused with other diseases; this makes the detection and control of this concealed disease even more complicated.

In the European Union, the seroprevalence, i.e. the percentage of cattle tested positive for BVDV, is around 60%. Depending on the size of the herd, this can result in a large amount of animals suffering from the disease and bearing a certain risk to healthy cows. Bovela® will allow veterinarians and farmers to have a new and convenient tool to protect cattle from BVD.

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Boehringer Ingelheim
The Boehringer Ingelheim group is one of the world’s 20 leading pharmaceutical companies. Headquartered in Ingelheim, Germany, Boehringer Ingelheim operates globally with 142 affiliates and a total of more than 47,400 employees. The focus of the family-owned company, founded in 1885, is researching, developing, manufacturing and marketing new medications of high therapeutic value for human and veterinary medicine.

Taking social responsibility is an important element of the corporate culture at Boehringer Ingelheim. This includes worldwide involvement in social projects, such as the initiative “Making more Health” and caring for the employees. Respect, equal opportunities and reconciling career and family form the foundation of the mutual cooperation. In everything it does, the company focuses on environmental protection and sustainability.

In 2013, Boehringer Ingelheim achieved net sales of about 14.1 billion euros. R&D expenditure corresponds to 19.5% of its net sales.

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