Pluristem Therapeutics Receives FDA Clearance to Begin "First-In-Human" Placenta-Derived Stem Cell Clinical Trial

Clearance of IND Filing Paves Way for US-based Trial That Will Enroll Patients with Critical Limb Ischemia Who Are Facing Amputation

NEW YORK, NY, USA | March 2, 2009 | Pluristem Therapeutics Inc. (NasdaqCM:PSTI)(DAX:PJT), a bio-therapeutics company dedicated to the commercialization of unrelated donor-patient (allogeneic) cell therapy products for a variety of disorders, announced today that the US Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared the Company’s Investigational New Drug (IND) application to initiate a Phase I clinical trial for the treatment of Critical Limb Ischemia (CLI), the end stage of peripheral artery disease (PAD), using Pluristem’s PLX-PAD. This will be the world’s first clinical trial using PLX-PAD, Pluristem’s placenta-derived stem cells that are expanded using the Company’s proprietary 3D PluriX™ technology. PLX-PAD is an off-the-shelf, one-size-fits-all product that needs no tissue matching prior to being administered to patients. In this Phase I dose ranging trial, to be conducted at multiple locations in the US, PLX-PAD will be administered to patients considered "late stage" and defined as patients afflicted with CLI that have not responded to traditional medical or surgical interventions.

Zami Aberman, Chairman, President and CEO of Pluristem stated: “We are excited the FDA has cleared our IND application for our PLX-PAD product so quickly. PLX-PAD is our first product candidate in our PLX pipeline and this clinical trial will be the first time a placenta-derived stem cell product, grown using our 3D expansion technology, will be used in humans. Our PLX cells are an off-the-shelf, one-size-fits-all product that needs no tissue matching prior to being administered to patients. We believe this unique approach can provide patients with an affordable, immediate source of cell therapy and will position Pluristem as a leader in the cell therapy field.”

About Critical Limb Ischemia

In the US alone, it is estimated that 8-12 million people suffer from critical limb ischemia associated with peripheral artery diseases (PAD). The disease is characterized by narrowing and hardening of the arteries in the patient’s limb(s) caused and/or aggravated by diabetes, Buerger's Disease, other diseases and smoking. With decreased blood flow to the affected extremity, patients can suffer a host of complications including nerve and tissue damage. In advanced stages, critical limb ischemia can lead to gangrene, which often requires treatment with amputation. The disease is associated with a high rate of mortality and the need for frequent hospitalization from surgical complications.

About Pluristem

Pluristem Therapeutics Inc. is a bio-therapeutics company dedicated to the commercialization of unrelated donor-patient (allogeneic) cell therapy products for the treatment of several severe degenerative, ischemic and autoimmune disorders. The Company is developing a pipeline of products, stored ready-to-use, that are derived from human placenta, a non-controversial, non-embryonic, adult stem cell source.

These placental adherent stromal cells (ASCs) are expanded in the Company's proprietary PluriXTM 3D bioreactor, which imitates the natural 3D microenvironment of these cells and does not require supplemental growth factors or other exogenous materials. Pluristem believes that the resultant PLX (PLacental eXpanded) cells’ efficacy may be related to the secretion of cytokines or other potent immune modulators. Furthermore, PLX cells are immune privileged and possess immunomodulatory properties, thus protecting the recipient from immunological reactions that often accompany transplantations.

Pluristem's first product in development, PLX-PAD, is intended to improve the quality of life of millions of people suffering from peripheral artery disease (PAD). The Company's products in development also include PLX-IBD, targeting Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD); PLX-MS, targeting Multiple Sclerosis; PLX-BMT, targeting the global shortfall of matched tissue for bone marrow transplantation (BMT) by improving the engraftment of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) contained in umbilical cord blood; and PLX-STROKE, targeting ischemic stroke.

SOURCE: Pluristem Therapeutics Inc.

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