Athersys, Inc. (NASDAQ:ATHX) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note issued on Thursday. The brokerage presently has a $2.25 price objective on the biopharmaceutical company’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s target price suggests a potential upside of 7.66% from the company’s current price.

According to Zacks, “Athersys is a biopharmaceutical company engaged in the discovery and development of therapeutic product candidates designed to extend and enhance the quality of human life. The company’s lead product candidate, ATHX-105, is an oral, selective 5HT2c receptor agonist in Phase I clinical trials for the treatment of obesity. The company is also developing other orally active pharmaceutical product candidates for the treatment of metabolic and central nervous system disorders, utilizing proprietary technologies, including Random Activation of Gene Expression (RAGE). Athersys is developing MultiStem(r), its patented, adult-derived “off the shelf” stem cell product platform, for multiple disease indications, including damage caused by myocardial infarction, bone marrow transplantation/oncology support, ischemic stroke and other indications. “

Separately, Maxim Group restated a “buy” rating and set a $12.00 target price on shares of Athersys in a research note on Friday, September 1st.

Shares of Athersys (NASDAQ ATHX) opened at 2.09 on Thursday. The stock’s market cap is $238.07 million. Athersys has a 52-week low of $1.02 and a 52-week high of $2.30. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $1.66 and a 200-day moving average price of $1.49.

Athersys (NASDAQ:ATHX) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, August 9th. The biopharmaceutical company reported ($0.06) earnings per share for the quarter, hitting the consensus estimate of ($0.06). The business had revenue of $0.67 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $0.96 million. Athersys had a negative return on equity of 121.47% and a negative net margin of 729.07%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 12.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the company posted ($0.08) EPS. On average, analysts anticipate that Athersys will post ($0.24) EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In other Athersys news, EVP John J. Harrington sold 36,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $1.45, for a total value of $52,200.00. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 712,743 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,033,477.35. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Company insiders own 9.40% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. TFS Capital LLC bought a new position in Athersys in the first quarter worth about $149,000. Wells Fargo & Company MN lifted its holdings in Athersys by 4.8% in the first quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 61,176 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock worth $105,000 after acquiring an additional 2,800 shares during the last quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in Athersys by 21.9% in the fourth quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 156,880 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock worth $240,000 after acquiring an additional 28,178 shares during the last quarter. FNY Partners Fund LP bought a new position in Athersys in the first quarter worth about $206,000. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its holdings in Athersys by 11.1% in the first quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 265,165 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock worth $453,000 after acquiring an additional 26,526 shares during the last quarter. 19.08% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Athersys

Athersys, Inc is an international biotechnology company that is focused primarily in the field of regenerative medicine. The Company’s MultiStem cell therapy, an allogeneic stem cell product, is its lead platform product and is in later-stage clinical development. Its clinical development programs are focused on treating neurological conditions, cardiovascular disease, inflammatory and immune disorders, certain pulmonary conditions and other conditions where the standard of care is limited or inadequate for many patients.

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