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Atossa Posts 2012 Revenue Jump on Test Launches; Inks $30M Stock Purchase Deal

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Atossa Genetics today said that revenues for 2012 increased sharply following the launch of two tests.

Separately, the company also said that it has entered into a $30 million stock purchase agreement with Aspire Capital.

The Seattle-based company brought in revenues of $481,842 in 2012, compared to $1,500 in 2011. Of that total $475,402 resulted from its diagnostic testing service, while $6,440 derived from sales of Atossa's MASCT Systems.

Atossa attributed the revenue increase to the launch in late 2011 of its ForeCYTE test in a field experience trial, as well as sales of its ArgusCYTE test, which also was launched in late 2011. ForeCYTE was launched nationally in January.

Despite the rise in revenues, the firm's net loss for the year rose to $5.1 million, or $.41 per share, compared to a net loss of $3.4 million, or $.38 per share, in 2011.

The company, which went public in November, said the increase was due to higher SG&A costs, which reached $5.5 million in 2012, up 67 percent from $3.3 million a year ago.

The company ended 2012 with $1.7 million in cash and cash equivalents.

"We continue to make steady progress in the national rollout of our patented ForeCYTE Breast Health Test, advancing our ambition to arm women and their physicians with information that will enable improved breast health management and prevent breast cancer," Atossa Chairman, President, and CEO Steven Quay said in a statement.

"We are very encouraged by the enthusiastic response we are seeing from doctors and their patients for the ForeCYTE test during the early phases of our national rollout. We believe that widespread adoption of the ForeCYTE test could lead to a dramatic lowering of the incidence of breast cancer, much as the Pap smear has led to a 75 percent reduction in cervical cancer," he added.

Atossa separately announced it has reached a stock purchase agreement with Aspire Capital, which initially has purchased $1 million of Atossa's stock at $12 per share. After the US Securities and Exchange Commission declares the registration statement associated with the agreement effective, Aspire has committed to purchase up to an additional $29 million of Atossa's stock during the next three years at prices based on the prevailing market prices.

Atossa plans to use net proceeds from the stock sales for general corporate purposes and working capital requirements, it said. Quay said the deal provides the firm with added financial strength and flexibility, and Atossa does not anticipate needing to raise additional capital in the near term other than under the agreement with Aspire.

In Thursday morning trading on the Nasdaq, shares of Atossa were down 8 percent to $8.75.

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