Kern will remain in his current position as the George A. Sisson Professor and Chair, Department of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine while operating as Lyra’s CMO, according to a news release.
“We are excited to welcome Dr. Kern, who is a renowned physician in the ENT field and a world-leading expert in chronic rhinosinusitis, to the Lyra team as our chief medical officer, to oversee the development of our clinical pipeline,” Lyra Therapeutics CEO Maria Palasis said in the release. “Dr. Kern has a proven track record of global leadership in otolaryngology, in both academic research and clinical rhinology, that we believe will prove invaluable to Lyra’s successful development of LYR-210 and LYR-220.”
Kern was previously the president of the American Rhinologic Society and is the current president of the International Society of Inflammation & Allergy of the Nose. The 30-year veteran of the ENT field joined the Northwestern faculty more than 20 years ago and was appointed as the otolaryngology department chair in 2006.
He takes over the Watertown, Mass.-based company developing drug and delivery solutions for patients with ENT diseases, including LYR-210, which is designed to deliver up to six months of continuous anti-inflammatory drug therapy to the sinonasal passages for treating chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS) in those who have not undergone surgery for the disease.
LYR-220 is under development for CRS patients who have undergone a prior surgery and have persistent disease, while Lyra’s XTreo platform, which includes a drug administered through a bioresorbable polymeric matrix, is also being developed to address other disease areas with precise, consistent and local delivery through a single administration.
“I know firsthand the enormous need for new treatment options for CRS patients, and I am enthusiastic to guide the next phase of clinical development for LYR-210 and LYR-220,” Kern said. “Lyra established a clear proof of concept for LYR-210 with the recent positive LANTERN Phase 2 results, and I am pleased to join the dynamic leadership team to help advance Lyra’s next stage of growth as we work together to address the needs of underserved patients chronically suffering with CRS.”