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StemCells, Inc. Strengthens Product Development Team And Appoints Executive To Focus On Scientific And Strategic Alliances

Stocks in this article: STEM

Both Drs. Vasquez and Gage are experts in product development in the biotech industry. Dr. Vasquez was most recently Vice President, Global Development Program & Portfolio Management at Elan Pharmaceuticals. She earned her doctorate in immunology and bachelor's degree in microbiology from the University of California, San Diego. Dr. Gage has held senior roles in clinical development at Elan and Forest Laboratories, Inc. She earned her doctorate and master's degree in neuroscience from Albert Einstein College of Medicine. 

In connection with their hire, the Company has granted Drs. Salinas, Vasquez and Gage an aggregate total of 496,965 restricted stock units (RSUs).  Each grant was made pursuant to the Company's 2012 Commencement Incentive Plan and in accordance with Nasdaq Listing Rule 5635(c)(4) concerning inducement grants to new employees. Each RSU gives the holder the right to receive upon vesting, without cash payment, a share of StemCells common stock. With the exception of 11,765 RSUs, which vested three days after grant, all of these granted RSUs have four-year vesting schedules so that they vest in four equal parts on each of their first four service anniversaries, starting in 2014 and ending in 2017.

About StemCells, Inc.

StemCells, Inc. is engaged in the research, development, and commercialization of cell-based therapeutics and tools for use in stem cell-based research and drug discovery. The Company's lead therapeutic product candidate, HuCNS-SC® cells (purified human neural stem cells), is currently in development as a potential treatment for a broad range of central nervous system disorders.  In a Phase I clinical trial in Pelizaeus-Merzbacher disease (PMD), a fatal myelination disorder in children, the Company has shown preliminary evidence of progressive and durable donor-derived myelination in all four patients transplanted with HuCNS-SC cells. The Company is also conducting a Phase I/II clinical trial in chronic spinal cord injury in Switzerland and has reported positive interim data for the first three patients. The Company has also initiated a Phase I/II clinical trial in dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and is pursuing preclinical studies in Alzheimer's disease.  StemCells also markets stem cell research products, including media and reagents, under the SC Proven® brand. Further information about StemCells is available at http://www.stemcellsinc.com .

Apart from statements of historical fact, the text of this press release constitutes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and is subject to the safe harbors created therein. These statements include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the timing and prospect of initiating a Phase II clinical trial in PMD and concluding the Company's on-going trials in spinal cord injury and AMD; the Company's ability to successfully execute its product development activities; and the future business operations of the Company. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this news release. The Company does not undertake to update any of these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances that occur after the date hereof. Such statements reflect management's current views and are based on certain assumptions that may or may not ultimately prove valid. The Company's actual results may vary materially from those contemplated in such forward-looking statements due to risks and uncertainties to which the Company is subject, including the fact that additional trials will be required to demonstrate the safety and efficacy of the Company's HuCNS-SC cells for the treatment of any disease or disorder; uncertainty as to whether the FDA, Health Canada or other applicable regulatory agencies will permit the Company to continue clinical testing in spinal cord injury, AMD or in future clinical trials of proposed therapies for other diseases or conditions; uncertainties regarding the Company's ability to obtain the increased capital resources needed to continue its current and planned research and development operations; uncertainty as to whether HuCNS-SC cells and any products that may be generated in the future in the Company's cell-based programs will prove safe and clinically effective and not cause tumors or other adverse side effects; uncertainties regarding the Company's ability to commercialize a therapeutic product and its ability to successfully compete with other products on the market; and other factors that are described under the heading "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2012, and in its subsequent reports on Form 10-Q and Form 8-K.

CONTACT: Rodney Young
         StemCells, Inc.
         Chief Financial Officer
         (510) 456-4128
         
         Ian Stone
         Russo Partners
         (619) 308-6541

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