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Pluristem, Capricor Lead Regenerative Space Says Raymond James Analyst

7/30/15 12:37 PM EDT
Fate Therapeutics (FATE) is developing several small molecules which modulate umbilical cord stem cells. Reni Benjamin, Senior Biotechnology Analyst at Raymond James Financial, said the company’s shares, already up over 40% this year, could head higher in the second half. 'Umbilical cords are being used more and more in bone marrow transplants, but there are a lot of problems with umbilical cords including trying to expand these cells and get them to work really well,' said Benjamin. 'Fate has developed a drug that can now make these cells do better in the human body.' Elsewhere in the regenerative medicine arena, Benjamin is bullish on Ocata Therapeutics (OCAT), down 32% year-to-date, which is in the ophthalmology space, as well as Pluristem (PSTI), a $185 million Israel-based biotherapeutics company. Shares of Pluristem have fallen 5% so far in 2015, but Benjamin expects a second half turnaround. Another stock Benjamin is positive on is Capricor (CAPR), which develops cardiovascular drugs and sports a $70 million market-cap. The company’s shares have been on a wild ride in 2015, surging from $4 a share in January to more than $10 in March on news that it was moving into the Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy space before eventually falling back to where it started.
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