NEWARK, Calif., July 7, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- StemCells, Inc. (Nasdaq:STEM) announced today the appointment of Alan Trounson, Ph.D. to its Board of Directors. Dr. Trounson most recently served as President of The California Institute of Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), the largest scientific funding body for stem cell research in the world. "We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Trounson to our Board," said Martin McGlynn, president and CEO of StemCells, Inc. "His diverse background includes groundbreaking academic research in both in-vitro fertilization and stem cell science, and experience as a founder of a number of successful businesses, including the Australian Stem Cell Center. Dr. Trounson has also held several Australian government appointments, including director of the Australian Special Research Council, and has served as a member of the Prime Minister's Science, Engineering and Innovation council working group. This unique combination of leadership experiences make him a very valuable addition to our board at this transformational time for our Company." "I am excited to join StemCells, Inc. at this juncture in its clinical development program," said Dr. Alan Trounson. "StemCells, Inc. has pioneered the discovery and development of human neural stem cells as therapeutic agents and recent interim results from both the dry age-related macular degeneration and spinal cord injury studies strongly support the Company's plans to initiate Phase II proof-of-concept studies later this year. These promising clinical results also provide evidence of the potential of their HuCNS-SC ® cellular platform to address disorders of the central nervous system that have defied historical therapeutic approaches. I look forward to helping the company achieve the incredible potential that exists in their research and product pipeline." Dr. Trounson has been the recipient of over 30 awards and distinctions for his scientific work, including pioneering work in the fields of in-vitro fertilization and stem cells. As part of his academic research, Dr. Trounson pioneered a new stem cell biology approach for the treatment of a broad range of diseases and injuries, which was awarded the first ever Australian Center of Excellence in Biotechnology grant worth $110 million dollars. Dr. Trounson's previous academic positions include Scientific Director of Monash IVF Pty Ltd., Personal Chair in Stem Cell Science and Director of the Monash Immunology and Stem Cell Laboratories, Deputy Director/Director of the Monash Institute of Reproduction and Development, Director of the Centre of Early Human Development, Facility of Medicine, and Personal Chair of Obstetrics and Gynaecology-Pediatrics at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. He has founded a number of companies including Infertility Medical Center Pty Ltd./Monash IVF Pty Ltd., IVF Australia Corp/IntegraMed Corp (US), Sydney IVF Pty Ltd./Genea Pty Ltd., Maccine Pte Ltd and the Australian Stem Cell Center Ltd. He established two foundations, the Low Cost IVF Foundation for the treatment of infertile women in Africa and for the treatment of patients with HIV, to avoid vertical transmission to children and the Friends of Low Cost IVF (US). He is returning to Melbourne to continue to support international biotechnology in regenerative medicine.