Athersys Prices Registered Direct Offering of Common Stock and Warrants

Athersys Prices Registered Direct Offering of Common Stock and Warrants

CLEVELAND, Nov. 27, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Athersys, Inc. (Nasdaq:ATHX)
announced today that it has entered into definitive agreements to sell
10,000,000 shares of common stock and warrants to purchase up to 3,500,000
shares of common stock, in an offering with gross proceeds of $20.0 million.
All of the participants in the offering are institutional investors, the
majority of which are current shareholders of the company.The warrants
include Series A warrants to purchase up to 2,098,785 shares of common stock,
and Series B warrants to purchase up to 1,401,215 shares of common stock.The
Series A warrants are immediately exercisable, and the Series B warrants are
non-exercisable for six months. Both series of warrants have an exercise price
of $2.50 per share of common stock and expire on March 31, 2015.Each share of
common stock, along with a Series A warrant and a Series B warrant to purchase
up to a combined 0.35 share of common stock, was offered for a purchase price
of $2.00.

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 and potential expansion of certain clinical trials to take advantage of
emerging international regulatory initiatives designed to accelerate the
development and commercialization of regenerative medicine therapies.

Maxim Group LLC is acting as the lead placement agent for the offering.First
Analysis Securities Corporation is acting as co-agent for the offering.

The offering is expected to close on or about December 3, 2013, subject to
customary closing conditions.

The shares of common stock and warrants are being offered by Athersys pursuant
to a shelf registration statement on Form S-3 (file no. 333-185991) filed
pursuant to the Securities Act of 1933, which was previously filed with, and
declared effective by, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). A
prospectus supplement relating to the offering will be filed with the SEC and
will be available on the SEC's website at http://www.sec.gov.

This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation
of an offer to buy these securities, nor shall there be any sale of these
securities in any jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would
be unlawful prior to the registration or qualification under the securities
laws of any such jurisdiction.

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 MultiStemĀ®
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.

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

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