ImmuCell Corp. said that it has received a $50,000 smallbusiness innovation research grant from the National Instituteof Allergy and Infectious Diseases to test the effectiveness ofits bovine antibody against strains of a bacterium that causessevere, chronic diarrhea in people who areimmunocompromised.

The Portland, Maine, company estimates that Cryptosporidiumparvum infections occur in 5 percent to 10 percent of U.S. AIDSpatients, with associated mortality as high as 60 percent.

ImmuCell's antibody is in Phase I trials in AIDS patients withcryptosporidiosis. In vitro data indicates that the antibody maywork by blocking invasion by the parasites of the host'sepithelial cells in the intestine, said Joseph Crabb, director ofR&D. It's also possible that it might block development of theorganisms once they're in cells, or a combination of bothmechanisms, Crabb said.

ImmuCell stock (NASDAQ:ICCC) closed at 94 cents, down 3cents, on Monday. -- KB

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