Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals agreed to acquire the US rights to the over-the-counter Zantac product line in the USA for $510 million in cash.

Boehringer announced the new deal with Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer on Friday and said it was subject to review and approval by the Federal Trade Commission, as well as certain other conditions notably the acquisition by J&J of the Consumer Healthcare business of Pfizer, which is expected to close by the end of 2006.

The Zantac (ranitidine) OTC business is being divested in order secure approval by the FTC of the $16.6 billion acquisition by J&J. Last week, Pfizer and J&J also sold off five other brands to Chattem in a $410 million deal also designed to get the acquisition through the FTC.

Zantac will be distributed alongside a product line that includes Dulcolax laxatives, said Boehringer Ingelheim in a statement.