CLEVELAND, Aug. 13, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Athersys, Inc. (Nasdaq:ATHX) today announced its financial results for the second quarter ended June 30, 2012. Second quarter and recent highlights include:
- Continued advancement of ongoing MultiStem ® Phase 2 clinical studies for treatment of ulcerative colitis, with Pfizer Inc., and for treating ischemic stroke;
- Accelerated characterization and development of the company's 5HT2c agonist portfolio for obesity and other disorders, and business development outreach and discussions, building on momentum from recent Lorcaserin and Qnexa obesity drug approvals;
- Engaged in planning and preparation for potential Phase 2/3 clinical study of MultiStem administration to prevent or reduce graft-versus-host disease (GvHD), following productive 2 nd quarter meeting with FDA;
- Received a U.S. patent providing protection through 2028 for the use of non-embryonic multipotent stem cells for the reduction in severity or prevention of GvHD, an indication for which the company already has orphan drug designation;
- Granted orphan drug designation by the FDA for MultiStem cell therapy for the treatment of Hurler's Syndrome, and published preclinical study results suggesting that MultiStem cells could provide benefit to patients suffering from other orphan neurological conditions, such as Hurler's Syndrome (in the journal Cell Transplantation);
- Recorded revenues of $2.7 million and a net loss of $3.7 million for the quarter ended June 30, 2012; and
- Ended the quarter with $10.9 million in cash and cash equivalents.
"In the second quarter of 2012, we were focused on progress in our ongoing clinical-stage programs evaluating our proprietary cell therapy platform, MultiStem, for ulcerative colitis and ischemic stroke, while making solid headway on planning for future clinical studies," said Gil Van Bokkelen, Ph.D., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
"In addition, we continue our development and evaluation of novel, potent, highly selective compounds that act through stimulation of the 5HT2c serotonin receptor for the treatment of obesity and other conditions. Preclinical studies suggest that our 5HT2c agonist program may provide significantly better weight loss than competing approaches that were recently approved by the FDA, and provide a better safety profile due to superior compound selectivity.