Protalix to trial nerve gas treatment

The drug will probably only have to undergo Phase I trials.

Protalix (NYSE Amex: PLX) held a presentation for investors today, in which it reported that a Phase I (safety) trial for a drug it had developed for treating the effects o nerve gas would begin in the current quarter. Drugs for treating effects of ABC (atomic, biological, and chemical weapons) sometimes undergo only the safety test before their sale to customers, usually governments, is approved, because of the difficulty in finding ABC-affected patients for efficacy trials. This trial is therefore likely to be the last the company will have to carry out before its starts to sell the product.

The company also reported that the results of a trial of its treatment for Gaucher's disease showed that it was superior to the corresponding drug produced by Genzyme in penetration to the target cells.

Protalix also has in its pipeline of products a drug for the treatment of Fabry disease, and a treatment for arthritis.

Investment house HalmanAldubi began coverage of Protalix today with an unusually positive report. The investment house sees potential upside of over 100% in the company. Protalix's market cap is currently $540 million, HalmanAldubi's target price of $15 reflects a value of $1.3 billion. The report said that the share price did not reflect the added value of Protalix's technology platform, and called Protalix "the next Teva."

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on January 24, 2010

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2010

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