Athersys Releases Impressive 12 Month Heart Attack Data for MultiStem

| About: Athersys, Inc. (ATHX)

In an SEC filing today, Athersys (NASDAQ:ATHX) released very impressive 12 month data for MultiStem, its flagship stem cell off-the-shelf stem cell product, for patients suffering a heart attack:

The results were presented at the Eighth International Symposium on Stem Cell Therapy and Cardiovascular Innovations in Madrid, Spain by Dr. Marc Penn, M.D., Ph.D., co-principal investigator of this study and Director of Cardiovascular Cell Therapy at the Cleveland Clinic, and Director of the Skirball Laboratory for Cardiovascular Cellular Therapeutics:

The mean left ventricular ejection fraction of the treated patients was substantially higher at twelve months than at baseline, with an increase of 11.3% (4.6 absolute percentage points) from baseline over the twelve-month period for all treated patients pooled, compared to 3.2% (1.3 absolute percentage points) for the registry group.

Treated patients' stroke volume and wall motion, two additional parameters of heart function, were substantially better than baseline at twelve months and also improved from the four-month evaluation. Mean stroke volume and wall motion improved 24.3% and 10.2%, respectively, from baseline over the twelve-month period, while registry patients improved only 7.7% and 5.8% over the period.

Among those patients with more severe heart attacks (i.e. LVEF ≤ 45%) where twelve-month data were available, the MultiStem treated patients demonstrated a 19.9% improvement in mean LVEF over the period, compared to 6.2% for the registry patients. Treated patients showed a statistically significant improvement in mean stroke volume relative to baseline with a 27.7% improvement (p<0.01), compared to a decline of 8.8% for the registry group. Mean wall motion improved 11.9% for the treatment group, while declining by 0.4% in the registry group.

Additionally, analysis of data from Holter monitoring in the first month demonstrated a trend for lower incidence of tachycardia in the treated patients compared to the registry patients and no significant difference in arrhythmias between the groups.

Why Athersys management didn't bother to issue a press release on these impressive results is puzzling and may help explain why this company is so far under the radar screens of Wall Street. The closest competitor to Athersys in the regenerative medicine sector is Australian based, Mesoblast (OTC:MEOBF), who's ground breaking deal with Cephalon (NASDAQ:CEPH) last December, catapulted the company's market cap to over $2.5 Billion. This compares to a current $67 Million for Athersys. Based on these results and the stunningly disparate market caps, Athersys seems grossly undervalued as its MultiStem product is a therapeutic platform with the potential of treating many diseases.

These are the personal views of Wall Street Titan. Do your own due diligence.

Disclosure: I am long ATHX.