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Cayuga Biotech Appoints Andrea Ashford-Hicks as Chief Executive Officer

MOUNT VERNON, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Cayuga Biotech, an early-stage platform biotechnology company harnessing biomimetic polyphosphate to address severe bleeding and wound healing, today announced that Andrea Ashford-Hicks has been named the company’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Ms. Ashford-Hicks, who brings more than 20 years of industry experience, will succeed Damien Kudela, PhD, the inventor of lead candidate CAY001 and co-founder of Cayuga Biotech, who will assume the role of Chief Scientific Officer.

“We are thrilled to welcome Andrea to our team which marks an important milestone for Cayuga,” said Dr. Kudela, co-founder of Cayuga Biotech. “Andrea shares Cayuga’s vision to transform the hemostasis market,” said Dr. Kudela. “Her diverse development, commercial and strategy background will be highly synergistic with Cayuga’s team of scientists as we advance our lead candidate to the clinic.”

Prior to Cayuga, Ms. Ashford-Hicks served as Senior Vice President of Late-Stage Development and Commercialization at Enzyvant Therapeutics. Under her leadership, Enzyvant received FDA approval for RETHYMIC® for pediatric congenital athymia. She also has contributed to multiple regulatory approvals and product launches over her career in leadership roles at Agenus, EMD Serono, Janssen, Allos, and Pfizer. Ms. Ashford-Hicks earned a dual degree in Biology from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton school and College of Arts and Sciences.

“Each year, nearly 2 million people die of hemorrhage, and I believe in the potential of this foundational technology to dramatically change outcomes across hemostasis-related clinical challenges,” said Ms. Ashford-Hicks. “Cayuga’s lead candidate already has demonstrated a survival benefit in pre-clinical studies and will enter the clinic later this year.”

About Cayuga Biotech

Cayuga Biotech is an early-stage platform biotechnology company harnessing biomimetic polyphosphate to address severe bleeding and wound healing. Polyphosphate plays several roles in human biology that are dictated by the chain length of the molecule. Cayuga’s initial focus of drug development leverages polyphosphate’s role in hemostasis. With a core capability in materials science, Cayuga optimizes biomimetic nanoparticle formulations of varying polyphosphate lengths for unique applications, including serious bleeding, rare bleeding disorders, CNS bleeding and severe burns.

The Company’s lead candidate CAY001 is anticipated to enter the clinic in 2022 with an NDA expected in 2025 for major bleeding in patients treated with anti-platelet medications. CAY001 is in development for follow-on indications including trauma, anti-coagulant related bleeding and GI bleeding. In preclinical studies, CAY001 has been shown to accelerate hemostasis without off-target thromboembolism.

Cayuga Biotech received early-stage funding from IndieBio NY and the United States Department of Defense.


Damien Kudela

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Last Updated: 03-Mar-2022