Aposense Announces Success in Flotation

The Israeli biomedical company Aposense pulled off a successful initial public offering yesterday, floating shares and warrants on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange and raising NIS 94 million.

The company, which is developing diagnostic and therapeutic drugs based on targeting in vivo apoptosis (programmed cell death ), said its stock will trade under the symbol APOS beginning tomorrow.

Apoptosis is a factor in many illnesses. One of Aposense's products under development is the EarliTest system, which can provide early indication of how cancer patients are responding to therapy.

The flotation values Aposense at NIS 914 million post-IPO. Most of the money had been raised last week, at the institutional phase of the offering. Some of the biggest institutional investors in Israel took part, including Migdal, Psagot and Meitav.

Aposense is chaired by "Mr Teva," Eli Hurvitz, who had led Teva Pharmaceutical Industries for more than 30 years. He also chairs Pontifax Group, an investments fund.

"The success of our IPO during this unstable period in the financial markets reflects the confidence of the Israeli financial community in Aposense's vision and strategy," said Yoram Ashery, CEO of Aposense, in a statement.

Aposense is conducting Phase II clinical trials of a tracer for cell-death imaging using Positron Emission Tomography. In targeted therapy, it is collaborating with Teva in cancer treatments, using an Aposense probe conjugated to generic cytotoxic agents to increase drug concentration in the tumor and reduce normal tissue toxicity. Teva has said it will invest another $9 million in the venture.