Pluristem reports success in stem cell heart attack treatment

The study found that mice treated with the company's placental stem cells had improved cardiac muscle function compared with the control group.

Pluristem Therapeutics Ltd. (Nasdaq:PSTI; DAX: PJT: PLTR) today announced that its PLacental eXpanded (PLX) cells improve several parameters in acute myocardial infarction (heart attacks) in animals. The preclinical trial was conducted at the Center for Regenerative Therapies in Germany.

The trial included 20 mice, which were given induced heart attacks. Half the mice were then given either PLX cells, and the other half were given a cell-free medium as a control. Five other mice underwent a sham (placebo) operation. After four weeks, the mice underwent an ECG, and were then killed for a physical examination of their hearts. The mice which received PLX had improved cardiac muscle function compared with the control group.

Study leader Prof. Christof Stamm said, "As a cardiac surgeon, the unique ability demonstrated by Pluristem's PLX cells for the treatment of heart disease is very exciting." He added, "PLX cells showed promising results in the AMI studies."

Pluristem chairman and CEO Zami Aberman said, "These results demonstrate the potential benefits of our cells for use in the treatment of ischemic heart disease, a multi-billion dollar annual market, and one in which many pharmaceutical companies are constantly looking to provide patients with innovative and effective solutions. In addition to moving ahead with our AMI trial, we look forward to continuing to work on finding cell therapy solutions for numerous debilitating diseases."

An article in the New England Journal of Medicine states that 624,000 patients suffer an acute myocardial infarction annually in the US, a number that will most likely increase with the rising prevalence of obesity, diabetes and the aging of the population.

Pluristem's share price rose 5.1% by mid-afternoon on the TASE today to NIS 8.50, after closing at $2.15 on Nasdaq yesterday, giving a market cap of $95 million. The share is up 6.5% in premarket trading on Nasdaq today.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on March 20, 2012

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2012

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