ARLINGTON, Mass., Nov. 01, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Kala Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: KALA) (“Kala” or the “Company”), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the research, development and commercialization of innovative therapies for rare diseases of the eye, today announced the appointment of Marjan Farid, M.D., to its Board of Directors. Dr. Farid, who is currently Professor of Clinical Ophthalmology, Director of Cornea, Refractive & Cataract Surgery, and Vice Chair of Ophthalmic Faculty at the Gavin Herbert Eye Institute, University of California Irvine (UCI), founded the Severe Ocular Surface Disease Center at UCI and is an industry leader in the care and treatment of corneal diseases.
“Marjan is an outstanding addition to our Board of Directors. As a treating physician, lead investigator in multiple clinical trials and subject expert in severe ocular surface diseases, she brings a unique understanding of the unmet needs we hope to address with KPI-012, as well as the critical importance of designing and executing a scientifically rigorous development program,” said Mark Iwicki, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Kala Pharmaceuticals. “We look forward to her many contributions as we advance KPI-012 into Phase 2/3 studies for the treatment of persistent corneal epithelial defect (PCED) later this year, while continuing to explore its potential for the treatment of other rare and severe ocular diseases that are driven by impaired corneal healing.”
At UCI, Dr. Farid’s clinical practice is divided between patient care, teaching and research. Her research interests focus on corneal surgery, specifically the use of the femtosecond laser for corneal transplantation. She performs limbal stem cell transplants as well as artificial corneal transplantation for the treatment of patients with severe ocular surface disease. Dr. Farid serves as the Chair of the Corneal Clinic Committee of ASCRS (American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery). Her work is published in numerous peer-reviewed journals and she has authored multiple textbook chapters. Dr. Farid graduated with a B.A. in Biology from the University of California, Los Angeles and earned her M.D. from the University of California, San Diego.
“I have devoted my career to treating people living with severe ocular surface diseases, which, left untreated, can lead to significant vision loss or blindness,” commented Dr. Farid. “I am deeply familiar with the challenges associated with these conditions and the limited options available to patients and their physicians, and am committed to helping advance a new generation of medicines that can address the underlying pathology and deliver significant clinical benefit. Based on its multifactorial mechanism of action and data to-date, I believe KPI-012 has the potential to alter the treatment paradigm in PCED and other diseases of impaired corneal healing, and I look forward to collaborating with the Kala management team and Board of Directors to advance this program through late-stage development.”
About Kala Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Kala is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the research, development and commercialization of innovative therapies for rare diseases of the eye. Kala’s biologics-based investigational therapies utilize Kala’s proprietary Mesenchymal Stem Cell Secretome (MSC-S) platform. Kala’s lead product candidate, KPI-012, is in clinical development for the treatment of persistent corneal epithelial defect (PCED), a rare disease of impaired corneal healing, which has received orphan drug designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Kala is also targeting the potential development of KPI-012 for the treatment of Partial Limbal Stem Cell Deficiency and ocular manifestations of moderate-to-severe Sjögren's and plans to initiate preclinical studies to evaluate the utility of its MSC-S platform for retinal degenerative diseases, such as Retinitis Pigmentosa and Stargardt Disease. For more information on Kala, please visit www.kalarx.com.
Forward Looking Statements:
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 that involve substantial risks and uncertainties. Any statements in this press release about Kala’s future expectations, plans and prospects, including but not limited to statements about Kala’s development of its lead product candidate, KPI-012, Kala continuing to explore KPI-012 for the potential treatment of other rare and severe ocular diseases that are driven by impaired corneal healing, and other statements containing the words “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “predict,” “project,” “target,” “potential,” “likely,” “will,” “would,” “could,” “should,” “continue,” and similar expressions constitute forward-looking statements. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements as a result of various important factors, including: the effect that the reverse stock split may have on the price of Kala’s common stock; Kala’s ability to realize the anticipated benefits of planned or completed transactions, including the uncertainty regarding the receipt of any milestone payments from Alcon Inc.; the impact of extraordinary external events, such as the current pandemic health event resulting from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), and their collateral consequences; Kala’s ability to maintain its listing on the Nasdaq Global Select Market; the uncertainties inherent in the initiation and conduct of preclinical studies and clinical trials; uncertainties regarding availability and timing of data from clinical trials; whether results of early clinical trials or trials in different disease indications will be indicative of the results of ongoing or future trials; whether results of the Phase 1b clinical trial of KPI-012 will be indicative of results for any future clinical trials and studies of KPI-012; uncertainties associated with regulatory review of clinical trials and applications for marketing approvals; Kala’s ability to retain and hire key personnel; the sufficiency of cash resources and need for additional financing and other important factors, any of which could cause the Kala’s actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, discussed in the “Risk Factors” section of Kala’s Annual Report on Form 10-K, most recently filed Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q and other filings Kala makes with the Securities and Exchange Commission. These forward-looking statements represent Kala’s views as of the date of this press release and should not be relied upon as representing Kala’s views as of any date subsequent to the date hereof. Kala does not assume any obligation to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.