Cidara Therapeutics Appoints Biotechnology Industry Veteran Christopher Kurtz As Executive Vice President of Technical Operations
Former head of commercial API manufacturing at Gilead Sciences will lead technical operations for development of Cidara’s antifungal and antiviral programs
SAN DIEGO, Dec. 15, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Cidara Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: CDTX), a biotechnology company developing long-acting therapeutics designed to transform the standard of care for patients facing serious fungal or viral infections, today announced the appointment of Christopher (Chris) Kurtz as executive vice president of technical operations. Mr. Kurtz brings more than 26 years of experience in global manufacturing, engineering, supply chain, CMC development and program management for drugs and devices at various stages of development.
“We are pleased to welcome Chris to our leadership team at such a pivotal time for our antifungal and antiviral programs,” said Jeffrey Stein, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of Cidara. “Chris’s leadership and deep manufacturing expertise, delivering both biologic and small molecule drugs to market, will be invaluable as we advance rezafungin, currently in pivotal Phase 3 trials, towards filing, and advance our antiviral conjugate (AVC) influenza program to IND filing.”
Prior to joining Cidara, Mr. Kurtz served as head of commercial API manufacturing at Gilead Sciences, where he and his team played an instrumental role in the recent launches of products such as Biktarvy and Veklury (remdesivir). He previously served as vice president, for drug device industrialization at AbbVie, where he led product scale-up and industrialization projects for drug-device combinations. Prior to that, Mr. Kurtz held a number of leadership positions where he managed the development, scale-up and commercialization of drugs, biologics, medical devices and combination products at various companies, including Monsanto, Nektar Therapeutics, Alza Corporation, Alexza and Novo Nordisk. He has successfully established supply capabilities and navigated products from late-stage development through approval, launch and sustained commercialization. Mr. Kurtz holds a B.S. in chemical engineering from the University of Colorado and is a graduate of the Westinghouse S3G Nuclear Engineering Program. He is also a proud veteran of the US Navy Submarine Force.
Mr. Kurtz commented, “Cidara’s commitment to the development of novel long-acting therapeutics for serious fungal and viral infections is of vital importance now more than ever. Rezafungin has the potential to become the new standard of care for the treatment and prevention of invasive fungal infections globally, and I look forward to leveraging my manufacturing and supply chain expertise to support a successful launch in the coming years. Additionally, Cidara is leveraging its Cloudbreak platform to create a new class of long-acting antivirals in influenza, RSV and HIV, and I am very excited to work with the Cidara team to advance these programs.”
Rezafungin is a novel once-weekly echinocandin being developed for both the treatment and prevention of serious fungal infections, such as candidemia and invasive candidiasis. The structure and properties of rezafungin are specifically designed to improve upon a clinically validated mechanism intended to enhance its efficacy and safety potential for patients. Cidara is currently conducting a Phase 3 clinical trial with rezafungin for the first-line treatment of candidemia and/or invasive candidiasis (ReSTORE trial) and a second Phase 3 clinical trial of once-weekly rezafungin for the prevention of invasive fungal disease in patients undergoing allogeneic blood and marrow transplantation (ReSPECT trial).
About Cloudbreak AVCs
Cidara is developing a new generation of immunotherapeutic antivirals from its Cloudbreak antiviral platform that couple potent antivirals to a human antibody fragment. These long-acting, antiviral conjugates (AVCs) directly inhibit viral proliferation while simultaneously engaging the immune system. AVCs are initially being studied for the prevention and treatment of seasonal and pandemic influenza, with the potential to deliver universal protection for an entire flu season with a single dose. Cidara is also advancing preclinical and discovery AVC programs to target other life-threatening viruses, such as RSV, HIV and CoV, including COVID-19.
About Cidara Therapeutics
Cidara is developing long-acting therapeutics designed to transform the standard of care for patients facing serious fungal or viral infections. The Company’s portfolio is comprised of its lead antifungal candidate, rezafungin, in addition to antiviral conjugates (AVCs) for the prevention and treatment of influenza and other viral diseases from Cidara’s proprietary Cloudbreak® antiviral platform. Cidara is headquartered in San Diego, California. For more information, please visit www.cidara.com.
This release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and such forward-looking statements are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. “Forward-looking statements” describe future expectations, plans, results, or strategies and are generally preceded by words such as “anticipates,” “expect,” “may,” “plan” or “will”. Forward-looking statements in this release include, but are not limited to, statements related to the potential for rezafungin to transform the standard of care in treatment and prevention of invasive fungal infections, as well as the potential of the Cloudbreak platform to create a new class of long-acting AVCs in influenza, RSV and HIV. Such statements are subject to a multitude of risks and uncertainties that could cause future circumstances, events, or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements, such as unanticipated delays in or negative results from Cidara’s clinical trials, impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on patient enrollment or other obstacles to the development of rezafungin and advancement of Cidara’s other development programs. These and other risks are identified under the caption “Risk Factors” in Cidara’s most recent Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q and other filings subsequently made with the Securities and Exchange Commission. All forward-looking statements contained in this press release speak only as of the date on which they were made and are based on management’s assumptions and estimates as of such date. Cidara does not undertake any obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of the receipt of new information, the occurrence of future events or otherwise.
Karen O’Shea, Ph.D.