Girl Dies as Pluristem Therapeutics Sells on Gains With Miracle Cells
Published: Nov 09, 2012
Pluristem Therapeutics Inc.’s stock doubled in Nasdaq trading from May through September, helped by three news releases announcing that patients’ lives had been saved by injections of the company’s experimental stem cells. the stock soared on the positive news, two top executives profited by selling shares at the highest price in more than four years as part of a pre-determined program. When the first of those patients, a 7-year-old girl with a bone- marrow disease, died four months after the company said her life had been saved, Pluristem was silent. The company raised $34 million selling shares a week later. Pluristem has fallen 22 percent as of yesterday’s close from its 2012 peak on Aug. 16. The shares fell 14 percent to 12.60 shekels as of 2:10 p.m. in Tel Aviv, its lowest level in intraday trading since July 23. The volume was triple its three- month average. Pluristem still has made no announcement of the girl’s death, which was reported by the Israeli newspaper Globes on Oct. 9 in an interview with Zami Aberman, the company’s chief executive officer. The Haifa, Israel-based company doesn’t follow patients after they are released from the hospital and wasn’t obligated to report the girl’s death, he said.