The news that a prominent insurer had decided to cover a digital therapeutic for opioid disorder spurred national headlines recently. In this case, the therapeutic had a breakthrough designation from the FDA. That payer decision underscored the potential as well as the challenges that have arisen around developing and marketing digital therapeutics, which have become a fast-growing segment within digital healthcare. DTx delivers clinical interventions directly to patients via software to treat, manage or prevent disease — ranging from behavioral health conditions to diabetes. We’ll take a close look at this burgeoning field and see where we’re headed in the years to come.
Corey M. McCann, MD, PhD, is the President and CEO of Pear Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: PEAR), a pioneer in prescription digital therapeutics as the first company to receive market authorization for software to treat disease. Previously, Corey was an investor with MPM Capital, where he evaluated new healthcare investment opportunities, managed relationships with strategic partners, and oversaw strategy and execution at portfolio companies. Prior to MPM, he was an Engagement Manager with McKinsey & Company, where he advised pharmaceutical, medical device, and biotechnology companies on the acquisition, development, and commercialization of life science technologies. He led McKinsey’s central nervous system expertise group, advising clients across the healthcare value chain.
Corey has previous investment experience with RiverVest Venture Partners, where he performed diligence on early-stage investments, and at NeuroInsights, where he evaluated brain-related technologies. Corey has also served as a member of the board of directors of NOUS Imaging, Inc. a technology company focused on medical imaging software, as a director of Eternia Group LLC, and as a director of Eternia Group SRL. Previously, he served on the board of Edumedics LLC (now known as SentryHealth), a health and wellness solutions technology company and Resolute Bio, Inc., a biotechnology company developing peptide-based drugs for chronic metabolic and neurological disorders.
Corey trained as a physician-scientist via the Medical Scientist Training Program. For his PhD, he studied the molecular biology of synapses at Harvard University and at Washington University in St Louis. He was also a post-doctoral researcher at the Massachusetts General Hospital where he developed imaging techniques for the visualization of the brain. He received his MD from Washington University in St. Louis. He graduated summa cum laude from The Pennsylvania State University where he was an Evan Pugh Scholar, receiving a Bachelor of Science in Biology with minors in neuroscience, biochemistry, and molecular biology.
Brent Vaughan is CEO of Cognito Therapeutics, a clinical-stage company leading the development of a new class of disease-modifying digital therapeutics to treat neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer’s disease. With more than 20 years of experience, he has a proven track record of success developing proprietary technologies and products across multiple domains, including digital therapeutics, medical devices, and pharmaceuticals.
Prior to Cognito, Brent was Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder at Cognoa, an AI-based digital therapeutics company, where he established the company as a leader in digital therapeutics and pediatric behavioral health. Under his leadership, Cognoa was awarded FDA Breakthrough Designation for the first two products for autism and successfully completed the clinical development of the lead product. He was also co-founder at WellnessFX, a leading digital health company.
Brent has also held leadership positions in business development and product management in therapeutic and medical device companies including Saegis Pharmaceuticals, Nektar Therapeutics, and Roche.
Andy Molnar is the CEO of the Digital Therapeutics Alliance (DTA), a trade organization focused on the needs of the clinically validated digital therapeutics industry. Before joining DTA, Andy worked in leadership roles with industry companies Cognoa and Pear Therapeutics, focusing on how to commercialize software as a medical device (SaMD) products, generating meaningful evidence for payors, commercial planning, and working with various government agencies and trade organizations to update policy for reimbursement.
Franklin brings more than two decades of experience across business, commercial and strategic marketing in the diagnostics, life sciences and technology industries leading and evolving innovation. Most recently, Franklin served as General Manager of the Precision Oncology business unit at Exact Sciences. Previously, Franklin was the Chief Commercial Officer at Thrive Earlier Detection Corp, where he led the go-to-market strategy development for their ground-breaking multi-cancer early detection assay. In addition, Franklin served as the Chief Business Officer for ArcherDX, a growth-stage molecular diagnostics company, where he was responsible for establishing and scaling the global sales, customer support, marketing, market access, business development and corporate development teams.
Franklin began his career as a technology consultant and software development leader. He holds a B.A. in English literature from Northwestern University, and an M.B.A. from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
Joe Perekupka is Chief Executive Officer of Freespira. He is a proven healthcare leader with over 25 years of commercial experience in various leadership and functional roles. He spent the last ten years commercializing novel technologies with startup and small growth companies focused in the neuroscience market. Prior to Freespira, Joe led commercial and operations for a non-invasive neuromodulation startup where he played critical roles in commercial strategy, product development, global partnerships, BD activities and a successful U.S. IPO. He has also served in contributing roles for the Digital Therapeutics Alliance and DTx societies.
Nicole DeFeudis is a Bay State native and proud University of Massachusetts Amherst Journalism Department graduate. She previously covered local news as a general assignment reporter at the Lowell Sun, and has also written for the Boston Globe Magazine, Daily Hampshire Gazette, and Worcester Telegram & Gazette. When she isn’t working on a story, you’ll find Nicole kayaking or lost in a good book.
Abhay has over 20 years of experience leading high-performing marketing and product teams within the life science industry. He is passionate about empowering our life science customers to unlock the value of data by optimal use of business processes and technology to facilitate better decisions throughout the value chain of drug discovery & development.
At Egnyte, Abhay serves as a life science domain expert focussed on strategy definition and capturing voice of the customer. Before Egnyte, Abhay has worked at startups and large organizations, including GE Life Sciences, Oracle, Medidata, and IDBS, within their marketing and product management functions. He has a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, and conducted post-doctoral research in olfaction at Columbia University, New York, NY.