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Cara Therapeutics 2021 R&D Day

Start Date:4/7/2021

Start Time:1:00 PM EDT

Duration:120 minutes



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Derek Chalmers

President and CEO

Cara Theraputics

Dr. Chalmers is a co-founder and has served as President, Chief Executive Officer and Director of Cara since 2004. Dr. Chalmers has over 25 years’ experience in the biotechnology industry with increasing levels of corporate and business responsibilities. Prior to founding Cara Therapeutics, Inc., Dr. Chalmers co-founded Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARNA), a drug discovery and development company, and served as its Vice President and Executive Director from June 1997 until May 2004. Prior to Arena, Dr. Chalmers was a Group Leader at Neurocrine Biosciences (NASDAQ: NBIX). Dr. Chalmers holds a Ph.D. from The Wellcome Surgical Institute, University of Glasgow and has previously conducted research as both a NARSAD and Fogerty International Fellow at The University of Michigan.

Dr. Brian Kim, M.D., M.T.R.

Assoc Prof of Med, Co-Director - Center for the Study of Itch, Washington Univ. School of Medicine

Dr. Brian S. Kim’s laboratory focuses on neuroimmune mechanisms that underlie skin inflammation and the sensation of itch. He identified previously unrecognized contributions of group 2 innate lymphoid cells (ILC2s) and basophils to the pathogenesis of atopic dermatitis (AD) in both mice and humans. These cells have emerged as critical sources of the type 2 cytokines IL-4, IL-5, and IL-13, which are now among the most important targets for biologic therapy in AD and other allergic disorders. More recently, the Kim Lab was the first to identify functionality of IL-4/13 and Janus kinases (JAKs) in sensory neurons as master regulators of chronic itch. This led to Dr. Kim leading the design of the pivotal phase 2 clinical trial for topical ruxolitinib cream by Incyte Corporation for AD which in turn led to highly successful phase 3 clinical trials, paving the way for FDA approval. These studies have immediate clinical implications as type 2 cytokine and JAK blockade have emerged as some of the most efficacious therapeutics in AD. Most recently, the Kim Lab has identified how natural killer (NK) cells can be harnessed to suppress skin inflammation. Additionally, they have identified a new form of itch within AD mediated by IgE, revealing a novel neuroimmune circuit. His research on neuroimmune regulation of AD and itch has led to awards and funding from the NIH, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, American Skin Association, American Academy of Dermatology, American Society for Clinical Investigation, American Dermatological Association, and International League of Dermatological Societies.

Dr. Mark Lebwohl, M.D.

Dean of Clinical Therapeutics, Chairman – Dermatology Dept, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

Dr. Mark Lebwohl is Dean for Clinical Therapeutics and Chairman Emeritus of the Kimberly and Eric J. Waldman Department of Dermatology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. He is a past President of the American Academy of Dermatology and Chairman emeritus of the medical Board of the National Psoriasis Foundation. He received his degree in medicine from Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts, USA, and completed his internship and residency in internal medicine, as well as his residency in dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. His key interests in clinical research include skin cancer and inflammatory skin diseases including psoriasis, atopic dermatitis, vitiligo and alopecia areata. Dr. Lebwohl identified one of the first topical therapies approved for skin cancer and precancerous lesions. In addition, many of the systemic and topical therapies for psoriasis and atopic dermatitis were investigated or developed in the Department of Dermatology at Mount Sinai. Dr. Lebwohl has authored or coauthored nearly 500 original peer-reviewed original reports, 400 invited articles and other publications and approximately 250 abstracts. Notably, he is the author of the first atlas, Atlas of the Skin of Systemic Disease, which is dedicated to cutaneous manifestations of systemic disease and coeditor of Treatment of Skin Disease, a leading textbook in dermatology that has been translated into several languages, won several medical book awards, and is in its 5th edition. Dr. Lebwohl is the founding editor of the Journal of Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis and of Skin, the Journal of Cutaneous Medicine. He has served on the editorial boards of the Journal of the European Academy of Dermato-Venereology, the Latin American Journal of Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis, the Journal of Skin Cancer and the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. Currently, he is editor of the dermatology section of Scientific American Medicine. In addition, as a renowned expert in dermatology, Dr. Lebwohl is frequently an invited visiting professor and speaker at universities, medical centers, and conferences and symposia worldwide. Active in a number of professional organizations, Dr. Lebwohl is an honorary member of the French Society of Dermatology and the Canadian Dermatology Association. He is past president of the American Academy of Dermatology and Chairman Emeritus of the Medical Board of the National Psoriasis Foundation. Dr. Lebwohl serves on the International Psoriasis Council. Throughout his distinguished career, Dr. Lebwohl has been the recipient of many awards, such as the Presidential Citation from the American Academy of Dermatology for his service to the AAD on psoriasis and for his work with the Psoriasis Foundation. Furthermore, he has received Lifetime Achievement Awards from the National Psoriasis Foundation and American Skin Association and has been recognized as a Leader of Distinction by the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology for his work in psoriasis. In addition, Dr. Lebwohl was the honorary chairman of the 1st World Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis Conference held in Stockholm, Sweden in 2006 by the International Federation of Psoriasis Associations and its patron, His Majesty King Carl Gustav of Sweden.

Joana Goncalves


Cara Therapeutics

Dr. Goncalves brings more than 17 years of leadership experience in the biopharmaceutical industry to Cara. Most recently, she served as Vice President, Medical Affairs for Dermatology and Neurology at Celgene Corporation where she was instrumental in planning and executing medical support activities for a number of programs, including OTEZLA® for psoriasis. Previously, Dr. Goncalves held the position of Vice President, Medical Strategy and Scientific Affairs at LEO Pharma Inc., the U.S. subsidiary of LEO Pharma A/S. She began her pharmaceutical career at Novartis Pharmaceuticals, working on a range of products across various therapeutic areas. Dr. Goncalves received her M.D. from the University of Cape Town, South Africa.

Eric Vandal

SVP of Commercial

Cara Therapeutics

Mr. Vandal has served as our Sr. Vice President of Commercial since June 2014. He has more than 25 years of executive and commercial leadership experience in the pharmaceutical industry. Prior to joining Cara Therapeutics, Eric was the Vice President, Sales and Marketing for Nuvo Research Inc, a specialty pharmaceutical company specializing in topical pain products. At Nuvo Research, Eric built and lead a commercial team of 25 employees in re-launching SYNERA® Patch into the interventional pain physician segment as well as pioneering its efforts to establish SYNERA® Patch in large corporate health care companies.

Thomas Reilly


Cara Therapeutics

Tom has over 20 years of experience in building and leading finance and administration teams at life sciences companies both in the United States and abroad. Most recently he served as Head of Finance of the Allergan General Medicines business. Prior to joining Allergan, he held finance leadership positions at Novartis. He earned his bachelor’s degree in finance from Manhattan College, an M.B.A in accounting from Seton Hall University & is a certified public accountant.
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