The invention offers simple geminal bisphosphonates with a prolonged carbon chain as potent and selective inhibitors of the acid sphingomyelinase. The compounds can be synthesized in a one-step or two-step procedure and show clear inhibition of cell death in vitro. First ex vivo data in rats show a reduction of platelet activating factor (PAF) – induced pulmonary edema in the presence of the bisphosphonates by at least 50 percent. Aerosols of bisphosphonates may be possible applicants for the treatment of pulmonary diseases. <br> Besides their use in inflammatory lung diseases the bisphosphonates with prolonged carbon chain may be used as a treatment option for cystic fibrosis and atherosclerosis. <br><br>
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