has a new chief executive officer, but he is someone quite familiar with the firm.

Lyle Hohnke, a board member at Aldagen, is also now the CEO. He replaces Tom Amick. The company did not disclose a reason for Amick’s departure.

Aldagen has plans for an initial public stock offering, aiming for some $80 million, which it filed last fall.

Hohnke has 35 years of experience in the health care industry.

"We appreciate the guidance Tom has given Aldagen over the years, and thank him for his many contributions that have brought the company to its current stage of development," said Richard Kent, Aldagen’s chairman, in a statement.

"Lyle’s involvement with the company as a Board member, and his significant fundraising and operational experience make him a great addition to Aldagen’s executive management team,” Kent added.

Hohnke’s most recent position was as a partner at venture capital firm Tullis Dickerson. He also worked at a venture firm leading the leveraged buyout of a division of Bayer A.G.

The company has several potential drugs under clinical development. It is focused on adult stem cells.

Backed by regional venture capital firms Intersouth Partners, Aurora Funds and Trelys Funds along with Harbert Venture Partners and Tullis Dickerson, Aldagen closed on $18.4 million in venture financing in April of 2008.

Aldagen, which was launched under the name Stemco, has raised some $65 million in venture capital.

Aldagen is using umbilical cord blood.

Aldagen utilizes proprietary technology that isolates stem cells that have high levels of the enzyme ALDH which could promote new growth of cells and tissues.

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