Home / Investors / Press Releases

CymaBay Welcomes Dennis D. Kim, MD, MBA as Chief Medical Officer

Download PDF

Experienced Biotech Executive, Physician-Scientist and Orphan Disease Expert to Lead Clinical/Medical Functions as Seladelpar Advances in Phase 3 and as Pipeline Programs Mature

NEWARK, Calif., May 13, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- CymaBay Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: CBAY), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing therapies for liver and other chronic diseases with high unmet need, today announced that medical and clinical leader Dennis D. Kim, MD, MBA, is joining the company as Chief Medical Officer.

“Improving patient lives is at the core of CymaBay’s mission, and Dr. Kim’s medical, clinical and strategic leadership – including his understanding of the rare disease community, passion for patient care, and a successful track record supporting fundraising, investor relations and industry partnership efforts – will help us do just that,” said Sujal Shah, CymaBay President and Chief Executive officer. “I’m thrilled to welcome Dr. Kim to our team and look forward to his leadership in advancing our current phase 3 program for seladelpar in PBC, as well as our pipeline of treatment options for liver diseases with high unmet need.”

Dr. Kim has over 20 years of drug development experience most recently serving as Chief Medical Officer of clinical-stage biotech company Afyx Therapeutics, where he led clinical, medical and regulatory development for Rivelin, a novel mucoadhesive patch to deliver treatment for diseases such as oral lichen planus. In this role, he served as the company’s key representative in all external facing activities including business development, industry events and third-party initiatives.

Prior to his role at Afyx Therapeutics, Dr. Kim served as Chief Medical Officer of Emerald Biosciences (now Skye Bioscience), where he focused on developing proprietary, synthetic cannabinoid-derived treatments for glaucoma and other diseases. Dr. Kim led preclinical and clinical research and development for THC-VHS for treatment of glaucoma and CBD-VHS for other eye diseases. Previously, he served as Chief Medical Officer of Zafgen, leading the company’s San Diego operations and clinical/medical affairs for development of its methionine aminopeptidase 2 inhibitor platform for metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes and rare genetic disorder Prader-Willi Syndrome. He has also counseled numerous pharmaceutical and biotech companies in advisory roles and as a Board member.

“CymaBay’s talented team is poised to bring seladelpar to patients in need, and I am honored to join the company as it continues its phase 3 trials,” Dr. Kim said. “The opportunity to impact the quality of life for thousands of patients and their families is what drew me to CymaBay – and that includes the exciting and promising pipeline of potential therapies for patients with liver disease and advancing more options for people in need.”

Earlier in his career, Dr. Kim held senior leadership roles at Orexigen Therapeutics, where he served on the company’s Joint Commercialization Committee in partnership with Takeda Pharmaceuticals for U.S. commercialization of weight-loss treatment Contrave; EnteroMedics, where he was a key member of the executive team leading the company’s initial public offering; and Amylin Pharmaceuticals, where he managed corporate and business strategic planning across all developmental drug candidates for treatment of diabetes and obesity, and oversaw corporate alliance partnerships. He has also served as an Assistant Professor and Chief Endocrine Fellow at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine.

Dr. Kim received his medical degree from The Chicago Medical School and completed his internal medicine residency at Rush University Medical College. He also holds a Master’s in Business Administration with emphasis in biotechnology structure and strategy from the University of California, San Diego Rady School of Business. He is a member of multiple professional societies, including the American College of Physicians, American Diabetes Association, American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, and the Endocrine Society, and has authored more than 100 manuscripts, review articles and abstracts. Dr. Kim also serves on the Board of Directors for Inversago Pharma.

About CymaBay Therapeutics
CymaBay Therapeutics, Inc. is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on improving the lives of people with liver and other chronic diseases that have high unmet medical need through a pipeline of innovative therapies. Our deep understanding of the underlying mechanisms of liver inflammation and fibrosis, and the unique targets that play a role in their progression, have helped us receive breakthrough therapy designation (U.S. Food and Drug Administration), PRIority MEdicines status (European Medicines Agency) and orphan drug status (U.S. and Europe) for seladelpar, a first-in-class treatment for people with primary biliary cholangitis (PBC). Our evidence-based decision-making and commitment to the highest quality standards reflect our relentless dedication to the people, families and communities we serve. To learn more, visit and follow us on Twitter and Linkedin.

Cautionary Statements
Any statements made in this press release regarding the future development of seladelpar or CymaBay’s pipeline programs, as well as statements regarding the completion of ongoing clinical trials are forward looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties. Actual results and the timing of events regarding the further development of seladelpar could differ materially from those anticipated in such forward-looking statements as a result of risks and uncertainties, which include, without limitation, risks related to: the success, cost and timing of any of CymaBay's product development activities, including clinical trials; effects observed in trials to date that may not be repeated in the future; any delays or inability to obtain or maintain regulatory approval of CymaBay's product candidates in the United States or worldwide; and the ability of CymaBay to obtain sufficient financing to complete development, regulatory approval and commercialization of its product candidates in the United States and worldwide. Additional risks relating to CymaBay are contained in CymaBay's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including without limitation its most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and other documents subsequently filed with or furnished to the Securities and Exchange Commission. CymaBay disclaims any obligation to update these forward-looking statements except as required by law.

Public Relations Contact:
Glenn Silver
Lazar-FINN Partners
(973) 818-8198

Investor Relations Contact:
Hans Vitzthum
LifeSci Advisors, LLC
(617) 430-7578

Primary Logo

Source: CymaBay Therapeutics, Inc.