CODA Biotherapeutics Names Susan Catalano, Ph.D., as Chief Scientific Officer


Industry veteran brings decades of drug discovery and development experience as company advances its chemogenetic gene therapy program to treat intractable neurological disorders


SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., March 8, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- CODA Biotherapeutics ("CODA"), a preclinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing a gene therapy-mediated chemogenetic platform to treat intractable neurological disorders, today announced the appointment of Susan Catalano, Ph.D., as chief scientific officer.

Michael Narachi, president and CEO of CODA, said, "We are thrilled to have Susan join CODA in this critical role at this pivotal time as we build out and progress our chemogenetic platform and development pipeline. With Susan's depth and breadth of discovery, leadership prowess, and preclinical and clinical science experience, she will be instrumental in helping us fulfill our mission to develop revolutionary chemogenetic therapies for patients with intractable neurological disorders. We are very proud to have her on the CODA team."

Dr. Catalano brings more than two decades of experience leading discovery and development functions and clinical development projects for multiple therapies in central nervous system and oncology. She joins CODA from Cognition Therapeutics where she was a member of the board of directors, co-founder of the company, and architect of its discovery, preclinical, and clinical science. Under her leadership, the company progressed from an idea into a full Phase 2 clinical program in Alzheimer's disease to an IPO last year.

"I am excited to join CODA and partner with our talented team, investors, and corporate partners, to advance our groundbreaking platform to identify treatments for unmet neurological needs," said Dr. Catalano. "CODA's combination of deep expertise in gene therapy and small molecule discovery and development, combined with its foundational technology in small molecule-tunable ion channels is truly unique, and holds the promise of shifting the paradigm of how we treat neurological diseases. I look forward to leading the effort to unlock the potential of this technology and develop therapeutics that can make a real difference in the lives of people who are desperate for treatment options."

Previously she held scientific leadership positions at Acumen Pharmaceuticals, Rigel Pharmaceuticals, and Roche Palo Alto. Dr. Catalano received a Ph.D. from University of California (UC), Irvine, with postdoctoral training at UC Berkeley and Caltech, and her B.A. from Barnard College. She also holds an adjunct appointment at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. She has authored numerous publications and patents and served as principal investigator of several National Institutes of Health (NIH) preclinical and clinical grant awards. At the national level, she has served on various NIH review panels in the areas of drug discovery and clinical development for neurodegenerative diseases. Dr. Catalano is an EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women class of 2015 recipient.

About the CODA Platform
CODA Biotherapeutics is developing a paradigm-shifting gene therapy approach by deploying a chemogenetic strategy for treating neurological disorders. The Company's innovative treatment aims to modulate specific neuronal circuits via adeno-associated virus (AAV)-mediated delivery of an engineered, inhibitory receptor by standard-of-care neurosurgical procedures. The receptor is designed to be quiescent in the transduced cells but will specifically and dose-dependently inhibit neurons when exposed to a novel, orally bioavailable small-molecule agonist. CODA expects this treatment will produce substantially improved and durable results while potentially avoiding off-target/adverse effects of currently available treatments.

About CODA Biotherapeutics 
CODA Biotherapeutics, Inc., is a preclinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing an innovative gene therapy platform to treat intractable neurological disorders, with an initial focus on epilepsy, movement disorders, and neuropathic pain. The Company is creating the ability to control neurons with its revolutionary chemogenetics-based technology. CODA is located in South San Francisco, CA. For more information, please visit

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SOURCE CODA Biotherapeutics, Inc.


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