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Press release from GlobeNewswire (a Nasdaq OMX company)

Athersys Announces Exercise of Overallotment Option

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Athersys Announces Exercise of Overallotment Option10:00 EST Tuesday, November 06, 2012CLEVELAND, Nov. 6, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Athersys, Inc. (Nasdaq:ATHX) announced today that it received $2.8 million of net proceeds from the exercise, in full, of the underwriters' over-allotment option for 2,970,300 shares of its common stock. Taking this into account, Athersys sold a total of 22,772,300 shares of its common stock, representing gross proceeds of $23 million, to new and existing investors who participated in the underwritten offering. Athersys intends to use the net proceeds from the offering for working capital and general corporate purposes, including the funding of its ongoing clinical trials. "We believe that the financing puts the company in a strong financial position to achieve important clinical development and business milestones," said William (B.J.) Lehmann, President and COO of Athersys. "We have meaningful opportunities ahead of us that could create substantial value for the company and its stockholders. We are encouraged by the strong support from current stockholders and the addition of new high-quality investors."About Athersys Athersys is a clinical stage biotechnology company engaged in the discovery and development of therapeutic product candidates designed to extend and enhance the quality of human life. The Company is developing its MultiStem® cell therapy product, a patented, adult-derived "off-the-shelf" stem cell product platform for disease indications in the cardiovascular, neurological, inflammatory and immune disease areas. The Company currently has several clinical stage programs involving MultiStem, including for treating inflammatory bowel disease, ischemic stroke, damage caused by myocardial infarction, and for the prevention of graft versus host disease. Athersys has also developed a diverse portfolio that includes other technologies and product development opportunities, and has forged strategic partnerships and collaborations with leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, as well as world-renowned research institutions in the United States and Europe to further develop its platform and products. The Athersys, Inc. logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=4548Forward-Looking Statements This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 that involve risks and uncertainties. These forward-looking statements relate to, among other things, the expected timetable for development of our product candidates, our growth strategy, and our future financial performance, including our operations, economic performance, financial condition, prospects, and other future events. We have attempted to identify forward-looking statements by using such words as "anticipates," "believes," "can," "continue," "could," "estimates," "expects," "intends," "may," "plans," "potential," "should," "suggest," "will," or other similar expressions. These forward-looking statements are only predictions and are largely based on our current expectations. A number of known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors could affect the accuracy of these statements. Some of the more significant known risks that we face that could cause actual results to differ materially from those implied by forward-looking statements are the risks and uncertainties inherent in the process of discovering, developing, and commercializing products that are safe and effective for use as human therapeutics, such as the uncertainty regarding market acceptance of our product candidates and our ability to generate revenues, including MultiStem for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease, acute myocardial infarction, stroke and other disease indications, including lysosomal storage disorders, and the prevention of graft-versus-host disease. These risks may cause our actual results, levels of activity, performance, or achievements to differ materially from any future results, levels of activity, performance, or achievements expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Other important factors to consider in evaluating our forward-looking statements include: our ability to raise additional capital; final results from our MultiStem clinical trials; the possibility of delays in, adverse results of, and excessive costs of the development process; our ability to successfully initiate and complete clinical trials; changes in external market factors; changes in our industry's overall performance; changes in our business strategy; our ability to protect our intellectual property portfolio; our possible inability to realize commercially valuable discoveries in our collaborations with pharmaceutical and other biotechnology companies; our ability to meet milestones under our collaboration agreements; our collaborators' ability to continue to fulfill their obligations under the terms of our collaboration agreements; our possible inability to execute our strategy due to changes in our industry or the economy generally; changes in productivity and reliability of suppliers; and the success of our competitors and the emergence of new competitors. You should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements contained in this press release, and we undertake no obligation to publicly update forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. CONTACT: William (B.J.) Lehmann, J.D. President and Chief Operating Officer Tel: (216) 431-9900 bjlehmann@athersys.com Investor Relations: Lisa M. Wilson In-Site Communications Tel: (917) 543-9932 lwilson@insitecony.com