Living Cell Technologies in trading halt pending Parkinson's trial result
By Paul McBeth
Nov. 9 (BusinessDesk) - ASX-listed Kiwi biotech firm Living Cell Technologies is in a trading halt until tomorrow when it expects to announce the results of a clinical trial testing its treatment for Parkinson's disease.
The Melbourne-based company's Phase IIb clinical trial was completed in April and it's been waiting for the results to be unblinded, which if successful would see Living Cell apply for provisional consent and launch its NTCELL treatment for Parkinson's in 2018. It today sought a halt in trading of its shares "pending the NTCELL Parkinson's disease clinical trial results announcement" which it expected to make tomorrow.
Living Cell developed the NTCELL treatment for Parkinson’s disease using choroid plexus brain cells from neonatal pigs, which are implanted into a damaged site in the brain and then function as a “neurochemical factory” producing factors that promote new central nervous system growth and repair disease-induced nerve degeneration.
The shares last traded at 20.5 Australian cents and have soared 130 percent so far this year.
Earlier this week the company filed a provisional patent after research with the Centre for Brain Research at Auckland University to see how NTCELL can reverse neurodegenerative processes. The project was undertaken by Auckland University's commercial arm, UniServices, to see whether Living Cell could extend the pipeline of its product and generate data to help identify neuroprotective product candidates.
(BusinessDesk receives assistance from Callaghan Innovation to cover the commercialisation of innovation)