Pluristem and United Therapeutics Enter into an Exclusive License Agreement to Develop and Commercialize PLX Cells for the Treatment of Pulmonary Hypertension
HAIFA, ISRAEL, June 20, 2011 --Pluristem Therapeutics Inc. (NasdaqCM: PSTI; TASE: PLTR) today announced that its wholly owned subsidiary, Pluristem Ltd., has entered into an exclusive out-license agreement with United Therapeutics Corporation (NasdaqGS: UTHR) for the use of Pluristem's PLacental eXpanded (PLX) cells to develop and commercialize a cell-based product for the treatment of Pulmonary Hypertension (PH).
Under the terms of the agreement, United Therapeutics will receive exclusive worldwide licensing rights for the development and commercialization of the future product for treating PH patients. Pluristem will retain all manufacturing rights; participate in the pre-clinical and clinical trial activities, as well as provide the commercial grade product.
Under the terms of the agreement, United Therapeutics will make an upfront payment of $7 million to Pluristem. Pluristem is eligible to receive regulatory milestone payments and other payments accumulating together with the upfront payment to a total of approximately $55 million and reimbursement of costs of its development and clinical activities. United Therapeutics will bear all the costs of conducting the clinical trials for this indication. Following commercialization, United Therapeutics shall purchase commercial supplies from Pluristem at a specified margin over Pluristem's cost. In addition, United Therapeutics will pay Pluristem specified royalties as a percentage from its gross profits generated from the developed product.
"This is an important milestone for our company, as it exemplifies our belief that Pluristem's PLX cells are a platform technology that can be used for the treatment of numerous diseases. This agreement is in line with our strategy of being a state of the art cell manufacturer while maintaining all the production and Intellectual Property rights for future product candidates", said Zami Aberman, Chairman and CEO of Pluristem. "We are very pleased to partner with United Therapeutics, an expert and a leader in the area of PH, and to cooperate with their talented team to quickly bring this product to market and improve the quality of life of Pulmonary Hypertension patients."
"Our mission to help patients suffering from Pulmonary Hypertension has led us to seek companies exhibiting innovative approaches and cutting edge technology, with whom we could partner for developing new therapies. Pluristem's impressive results of their current clinical trials, their strong intellectual property and unique manufacturing capabilities, convinced us to select Pluristem as our partner in developing an important cell therapy for treating PH", said Roger Jeffs, President and Chief Operating Officer of United Therapeutics."We are excited to enter into this partnership and to work alongside Pluristem in advancing this exciting platform."
The signing ceremony will be held tomorrow, June 21st at 09:30Israel time at the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange in the presence of Dr. Roger Jeffs, President and Chief Operating Officer of United Therapeutics, and Mr. Zami Aberman, Chairman and CEO of Pluristem Therapeutics.
Closing of the agreement is subject to certain closing conditions and is expected by the end of August 2011.
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About Pulmonary Hypertension (PH)
Pulmonary Hypertension is the damage that occurs to the pulmonary vessels (leading from the heart to the lungs) when the blood pressure in those vessels is abnormally high. The disease can be secondary to other conditions or unrelated to any identifiable disorder. Approxmately 1,000 new cases of this catastrophic disorder are diagnosed annually in the US*.
*National Library of Medicine
About United Therapeutics Corporation
United Therapeutics Corporation (NasdaqGS: UTHR) is a biotechnology company focused on the development and commercialization of unique products to address the unmet medical needs of patients with chronic and life-threatening conditions, including cardiovascular, cancer, and infectious diseases.
About Pluristem Therapeutics
Pluristem Therapeutics Inc. (NasdaqCM: PSTI; TASE: PLTR) is a leading developer of placenta-based cell therapies. The company's patented PLX (PLacental eXpanded) cells drug delivery platform releases a cocktail of therapeutic proteins in response to a host of local and systemic inflammatory diseases. PLX cells are grown using the company's proprietary 3D micro-environmental technology and are an off-the-shelf product that requires no tissue matching prior to administration. Data from two phase I studies indicatethat Pluristem's first PLX product candidate, PLX-PAD, is safe and potentially effective for the treatment of end stage peripheral artery disease. Pluristem's pre-clinical animal models have demonstrated PLX cells are also potentially effective in nerve pain and muscle damage, when administered locally, and in inflammatory bowel disease, MS and stroke, when administered systemically.
Pluristem has a strong patent portfolio, GMP certified manufacturing and research facilities, strategic relationships with major research institutions and a seasoned management team.
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