BLECH BUYS 3.6% OF RIBI COMMON STOCKRibi ImmunoChem Research Inc. of Hamilton, Mont., onThursday said it has entered into an agreement with New Yorkinvestor David Blech for a private placement of $1 millionworth of stock and warrants. Blech's purchase of 333,000 unitsrepresents 3.6 percent of Ribi common stock. The units,consisting of one share of common stock and one warrant topurchase an additional share of stock, have an initial exerciseprice of $4 per share. If Blech exercises the warrants at thisprice, his total investment would rise to $2.3 million, for a 6.9percent holding in Ribi common stock. The agreement allowsBlech to purchase an additional 1.7 million units on the sameterms.


Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc. of Des Moines, Iowa, haspurchased for an undisclosed sum the protein modificationresearch program of Plant Cell Research Institute Inc.

PCRI scientists isolated a gene responsible for high methioninelevels in the Brazil nut and introduced the gene into oilseedrape through genetic engineering. Pioneer hopes to insert thegene into soybean, corn and sunflower as well. Methionine is anamino acid needed in poultry and swine feed. The purchaseincludes three other amino acids: lysine, tryptophan andtheonine.

PCRI is controlled by Montedison SpA of Milan, Italy, which hasan 82 percent stake in the company.

"PCRI is in a phase of restructuring at this time," a Montedisonspokeswoman said. "The management and company focus areall changing."

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