Arkin nears investment in stem cell co Brainstorm Cell

Brainstorm Cell is about to conduct a Phase I/II clinical trial in Israel for the treatment of Lou Gehrig's Disease.

Sources inform ''Globes'' that Moshe (Mori) Arkin is in talks with Brainstorm Cell Therapeutics Ltd. (Bulletin Board:BCLI) to invest $5 million in the adult stem cell therapies developer.

Brainstorm said that the company did not comment on matters in negotiations. Arkin was unavailable for comment.

Arkin, who made $374 million in cash and shares on the sale of Agis to Perrigo Company (Nasdaq:PRGO; TASE:PRGO), is an active investor, who invests in many Israeli biomed companies. His negotiations with Brainstorm have already reached the exchange of documents stage, although it is not known if a deal will be reached.

Brainstorm Cell is about to conduct a Phase I/II clinical trial in Israel using the company’s stem cell therapy for the treatment of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) (Lou Gehrig's Disease), an incurable disease that usually kills within a few years.

Brainstorm Cell's treatment involves the implanting of adult stem cells (autologous cells) taken from the patient's bone marrow. The cells are cultured to differentiate to secrete factors that are aimed at delaying the onset of, and possibly halting, ALS deterioration, and implanted back in the patient.

$11 million has been invested in Brainstorm Cell to date, including $5 million by its controlling shareholder and president Chaim Lebovits.

Brainstorm Cell's share price rose 12.5% in early trading on Wall Street today to $0.27, giving a market cap of $25 million.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on January 27, 2011

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2011

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