Boehringer Ingelheim to start phase 1 development of BI 771716 – a potential new treatment for Geographic Atrophy, a leading cause of blindness worldwide

October 2, 2023 3:22 pm Published by

Ingelheim Germany and Basel, Switzerland, 2 October 2023 – Boehringer Ingelheim and CDR-Life announce the initiation of the Phase 1 evaluation of BI 771716 (Study Record |, an antibody fragment-based treatment developed to preserve vision of people living with geographic atrophy (GA).

GA is a chronic and progressive, irreversible retinal disease that occurs in people with late-stage dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD) impacting the ability to see. More than 5 million people worldwide[1] suffer from GA, of which more than 40% are legally blind. GA worsens with age, affecting 1 in 29 people above the age of 75 and 1 in 4 people above 90. Consequently, rising incidences are expected in aging populations.

BI 771716, developed with technology licensed from CDR-Life, is a highly specific antibody fragment of reduced size, enabling an optimized penetration through all retinal layers to the most critical target site driving GA disease pathology. Based on its molecular properties, BI 771716 has the potential to achieve unprecedented efficacy.

“We are very pleased to start the clinical evaluation of BI 771716, which resulted from collaborative efforts with CDR-Life,” said Clive R. Wood, Corporate Senior Vice President and Global Head of Discovery Research at Boehringer Ingelheim. “This brings us another step closer to achieving our vision of developing precise treatments to stop vision loss, protecting and preserving both people’s eyesight and quality of life.”

“We are delighted to see this compound progress into the clinic,” said Christian Leisner, Chief Executive Officer at CDR-Life. “We are looking forward to BI 771716 potentially becoming a treatment to transform the lives of people living with GA.”

Over the past decade Boehringer Ingelheim has built a strong and diverse retinal health pipeline, which focuses on three priority areas: The preservation of vascular function, targeting inflammation and neuroprotection. Core disease areas are AMD (from intermediate to neovascular AMD and GA), diabetes-related retinal diseases (Diabetic Retinopathy with its complications including oedema and ischemia) and gene-related retinal diseases with a focus on Stargardt’s disease.

Boehringer Ingelheim’s retinal health strategy includes the development of novel delivery platforms to address unmet need for people living with retinal conditions. Digital innovation for early detection and intervention, moving towards precision medicine regimens and remote treatment monitoring are additional key elements.

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About Boehringer Ingelheim

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, sustainable perspective. More than

53,000 employees serve over 130 markets in the two business units Human Pharma and Animal Health. Learn more at

About CDR-Life

CDR-Life is developing highly specific antibody therapeutics to target intracellular proteins presented on the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). Our versatile MHC-targeted antibody platform increases access to a vast array of antigens that were not previously addressable, to develop a pipeline of first in class therapeutics across a broad range of solid tumors. With a team of proven drug development experts and backed by leading cross-Atlantic investors, we are working to redirect and activate the patient’s own immune system to eliminate their tumors.

Media Contacts

Boehringer Ingelheim:
Dr. Reinhard Malin
Boehringer Ingelheim Corporate Center GmbH
Innovation Unit/Bio Comms, Corp. Affairs
Media + PR

Linda Ruckel 
Boehringer Ingelheim Corporate Center GmbH
Innovation Unit/Bio Comms, Corp. Affairs
Media + PR
P: 203-791-6672

Holly Hancock
MacDougall Advisors

[1] Tufail A, et al. Objective Measurement of Reading Speed and Correlation With Patient-Reported Functional Reading Independence. Presented at the 15th EURETINA Congress, Nice, France, September 17-20, 2015

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