Cayuga Biotech

Harnessing biomimetic polyphosphate
for human health

Cayuga's Mission

Our mission is to harness biomimetic polyphosphate to address pressing unmet needs in human health. Polyphosphate plays several roles in human biology. Our initial focus for drug development leverages polyphosphate’s role in hemostasis.

  • Bleeding: Every year nearly 2 million people die of hemorrhage

  • Wound healing: Non-healing wounds and severe burns affect nearly 6 million people in the US each year

Lead candidate, CAY001, is anticipated to enter the clinic in 2022 for major bleeding in patients treated with anti-platelet medications. CAY001 is in development for additional follow-on indications including anti-coagulant related bleeding, refractory GI bleeding and trauma. In preclinical studies CAY001 has been shown to accelerate hemostasis without off-target thromboembolism.

Science & Technology

Polyphosphate activity is dictated by the chain length of the molecule. With a core capability in materials science, Cayuga optimizes biomimetic nanoparticle formulations of varying polyphosphate lengths for unique applications, including serious bleeding, rare bleeding disorders, central nervous system bleeding and wound healing.



Key Publications

Kudela D. “Restoring Hemostasis Following Injury Using Polyphosphate-Coated Silica Nanoparticles.” The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology Journal. 2017, 31, 978.13.

Kudela D., Smith S.A., May-Masnou A., Braun, G.B., Pallaoro, A., Nguyen, C.K., Chuong, T.T., Nownes, S., Allen, R., Parker, N.R., Rashidi, H.H., Morrissey, J.H., Stucky, G.D. “Clotting Activity of Polyphosphate-Functionalized Silica Nanoparticles.” Angewandte Chemie International Edition. 2015, 54, 4018-4022.

Smith S.A., Choi S.H., Davis-Harrison R., Huyck J., Boettcher J., Rienstra C.M., Morrissey J.H. “Polyphosphate exerts differential effects on blood clotting, depending on polymer size.” Blood. 2010, 116, 4353-4359.

Smith S.A., Morrissey J.H. “Polyphosphate as a general procoagulant agent.” Journal of Thrombosis and Haemosasis. 2008, 6, 1750-1756.


Cayuga Biotech Team


Andrea Ashford-Hicks



Damien Kudela, PhD
Co-founder, CSO
Inventor CAY001


Kyle Ploense, PhD
Head of Research


Nathan Ogden, PhD
Senior Scientist


David McGuinn, PhD, DABT
Regulatory Advisor


Mark Tracy, PhD
CMC Advisor

Medical Advisors


Josh Goldstein, MD, PhD
Medical Advisor

Massachusetts General Hospital,
Harvard Medical School,
Department of Emergency Medicine


Jerrold Levy, MD
Medical Advisor

Professor of Anesthesiology,
Critical Care, and Surgery

Duke University,

Business Advisors


Karen Boezi
Business Advisor


Ajay Rai
Business Advisor


Nancy Stagliano, PhD
Business Advisor

Scientific Advisors


Prof. James Morrissey
Scientific Advisor

Polyphosphate expert
Biological Chemistry Department,
University of Michigan Medical School


Prof. Galen Stucky
Scientific Advisor

National Academy of Science
Materials Department, UCSB


News and Events:

Cayuga to present at DeepTechU venture conference on May 5, 2022

Cayuga Biotech announces Andrea Ashford-Hicks as new CEO

Cayuga selected for DOD's Joint Warfighter Medical Research Program

Cayuga will present at IndieBio Demo Day:

Cayuga Biotech wins UC Startup Competition and is named a finalist for the Extreme Tech Challenge in June

Cayuga Biotech named a finalist for the Army xTechSearch 3.0

Our Funding:

Cayuga is proud to be a member of the IndieBio Accelerator program. In addition, we are collaborating with DARPA as well as the United States Army.