The Boehringer Ingelheim group is one of the world's 20 leading pharmaceutical companies, Headquartered in Ingelheim, Germany, it operates globally with 145 affiliates and more than 44,000 employees. Since it was founded in 1885, the family-owned company has been committed to researching, developing, manufacturing and marketing novel medications of high therapeutic value for human and veterinary medicine. In 1905, Boehringer Ingelheim started with the extraction of plants and the purification of natural compounds; today scopolamine is one of the most important natural products as bulk chemical for the production of Buscopan® and Spiriva®.
Dr Hansjörg Hagels heads the group ‘Phyto Center’ at the headquarters in Ingelheim, which is responsible for plant breeding, plant IP protection, and large scale plant cultivation. From his background as pharmacist he is scientifically responsible for plant breeding activities for optimised secondary compounds (e. g. alkaloids) in herbal raw materials and quality assurance for these materials in further down-streaming towards pharmaceutical raw material delivery.
Boehringer Ingelheim contributes its expertise in alkaloid production and commercialisation, molecular breeding, translational biology and down-stream processing to the DISCO project.