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Connecticut Innovations Makes Third Investment in Cara Therapeutics Inc.

$15 million funding round helps advance company’s promising therapeutics for pain and inflammation

Rocky Hill, Conn., July 22, 2010 – Connecticut Innovations (CI), the state’s quasi-public authority responsible for technology investing and innovation development, today announced that it has made an investment of more than $280,000 in Cara Therapeutics Inc. (Cara) of Shelton, Conn. CI’s investment is part of a $15 million Series D round led by Rho Ventures. Other participants in the funding round include Alta Biopharma Partners, Ascent Biomedical Ventures, Devon Park Bioventures and MVM Life Science Partners. This is the third time that CI has provided funding to Cara.

Derek Chalmers, Cara Therapeutics’ president and chief executive officer, stated, “We are very pleased to further benefit from CI’s ongoing commitment to bioscience funding in Connecticut. This important financing provides the company with the necessary capital to move forward with Phase II multi-dose patient trials of our most advanced clinical compound in the coming year.”

Cara is a biotechnology company focused on developing novel therapeutics to treat pain and inflammation associated with human diseases. Their compound CR845 is currently undergoing clinical testing for acute pain in a post-surgical setting. This best-in-class compound possesses unique analgesic and anti-inflammatory activities appropriate for multiple therapeutic applications. Cara has built an extensive patent portfolio of 58 patents issued and 72 pending.

“Since Cara Therapeutics relocated to Connecticut three years ago, it has invested significant capital here to advance its promising drug candidates,” Governor M. Jodi Rell stated. “We are proud of our support for this company and of Connecticut’s continued growth as a center of the biotechnology, bioscience and biopharmaceutical industries.” Peter Longo, president and executive director of CI, said, “We are delighted to see expanded third-party validation of Cara’s technology in this funding round. The company’s technology addresses an important, multi-billion dollar market for pain management pharmaceuticals and has potential to offer effective solutions with fewer side effects to the 100+ million patients who suffer from acute or chronic pain annually.”

Kevin Crowley, CI managing director of investments, is a board observer of Cara Therapeutics.

About Connecticut Innovations, Inc. Connecticut Innovations (CI) is a quasi-public organization dedicated to driving a vibrant, entrepreneurial, technology-based economy in Connecticut. CI stimulates high-tech growth by investing in: early-stage Connecticut technology companies, university/industry research collaborations, technology transfer, and clean energy initiatives through the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund. CI also fosters collaboration among government, business, nonprofit and academic organizations to advance technology growth and promotes public policies consistent with CI’s mission. For more information on CI, please visit

About Cara Therapeutics Inc. Cara Therapeutics is a privately held biotechnology company focused on developing novel, superior therapeutics to treat pain and inflammation associated with diverse medical conditions. Cara’s current pipeline includes near-term clinical drug candidates identified as mechanistically distinct, peripherally-acting analgesics. The company’s lead development compound, CR845, is currently being tested in a multi-dose Phase Ib trial and is expected to enter a repeat dose Phase II trial in post-operative pain later this year. For more information, please visit


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