Stem Cell Therapeutics shares blitzed after PhIIb stroke trial fails

Shares of Stem Cell Therapeutics melted away to mere pennies this morning after the developer announced that its troubled Phase IIb trial for its new stroke therapy ended in failure after researchers were done in by a high placebo response.

In a release out this morning the company reported that their Phase IIb clinical trial of NTx-265 in acute stroke "showed that there was substantial improvement in the primary endpoint absolute change in NIHSS in both placebo treated patients and those receiving NTx-265" with no statistical differences between the groups.

"The profile and magnitude of the placebo response is extremely surprising and merits further examination" said Dr. Alan Moore, the CEO and president of the Canadian developer. "We are currently conducting a validation review process of the full trial. We expect to report on the outcome of this within the next two to three weeks, together with results from a number of secondary endpoints such as modified Rankin and Barthel index, which may provide an alternative to NIHSS as a pathway forwards."

Investors who had stuck with the company, meanwhile, went looking for a pathway out. Stem Cell's share (SSS) price was vaporized, dropping to nine cents after free falling 78 percent.  

- check out the company's release
- here's the Reuters story for more