Board of Directors


Mr. Katkin joined the OticPharma Board as Chairman in November 2015.  He recently served as the President and CEO of Avanir Pharmaceuticals from 2007 through the company’s acquisition by Otsuka Pharmaceuticals in 2015.  Prior to serving as President and CEO, Mr. Katkin led all sales, marketing, and medical affairs at Avanir as the Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing.  Prior to Avanir, Mr. Katkin was the Vice President of Commercial and Business Development at Peninsula Pharmaceuticals from 2004 to 2005, playing a key role in the concurrent initial public offering and ultimate sale of the company to Johnson and Johnson.  Additionally, Mr. Katkin’s industry experience includes leadership roles at InterMune, Amgen and Abbott Laboratories.  Mr. Katkin currently serves on the Board of Directors of Avanir Pharmaceuticals, Rigel Pharmaceuticals, Brain Injury Association of America, CoverMyMeds, and digital healthcare company MC10.  Mr. Katkin earned his B.S. in Business and Accounting from Indiana University, an M.B.A. from the Anderson School at UCLA, and Mr. Katkin is also a licensed certified public accountant.

Mr. Flesher joined OticPharma in July 2015.  He brings more than twenty years of strategic, operational, and leadership experience within the pharmaceutical industry.  Prior to joining OticPharma, he served as Chief Business Officer for Avanir Pharmaceuticals, where he helped build Avanir into a fully-integrated neuroscience company with a portfolio of products and a multibillion-dollar market capitalization prior to the acquisition by Otsuka Pharmaceuticals in 2015.  Mr. Flesher’s industry tenure includes roles across clinical development, sales and marketing, as well as corporate and business development at Avanir, InterMune, Amgen, and Eli Lilly and Company.  During his industry tenure, Mr. Flesher has participated in several drug development programs resulting in multiple product approvals and successful launches in the U.S. and Europe.  Mr. Flesher earned his B.S. in Biology from Purdue University and studied Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Indiana University School of Medicine.

Mr. Chimovits is a Senior Managing Director at OrbiMed.  He has more than fourteen years of operational experience, including ten years of senior managerial experience in public companies.  Prior to joining OrbiMed, he was the CEO of NasVax (TASE: NSVX).  NasVax acquired Protea and struck key agreements with GlaxoSmithKline and Novartis.  Previously, Mr. Chimovits spent more than seven years with Compugen (Nasdaq:  CGEN), as President, Compugen USA Inc. and Executive Vice President, Commercial Operations.  While at Compugen, he had P&L responsibility for more than 100 people and led multiple transactions including J&J, Novartis, Teva, Abbott, Medarex and others.  Mr. Chimovits earned his M.B.A., M.Sc. in Microbiology and his B.Sc. from Tel Aviv University.

Dr. Darvish is a Senior Managing Director at OrbiMed.  He is a veteran of the Lifescience investment community, with over fifteen years of experience covering medical technology development, corporate leadership and investment management.  Dr. Darvish spent eight years with Pitango, where he was a General Partner managing life sciences investments.  Previously, he was the founder and CEO of Impulse Dynamics, which he led for six years, culminating in a $250 million realization event.  Dr. Darvish obtained his M.D. and Ph.D. in Biophysics and Physiology from the Technion in Israel, and subsequently conducted his postdoctoral research at the N.I.H.  He has published over 100 patents, authored over 20 publications and received eight prizes and awards.

Mr. Kariv is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Pontifax.  He serves as an active board member of many of the funds’ portfolio companies, assuming a special responsibility for strategic planning.  Among other positions, Mr. Kariv serves as the Chairman of Check-Cap and is a board member at Macrocure and V-Wave.  During the ten years prior to establishing Pontifax, he held senior management positions at top Israeli financial institutions, playing a key role in investing in, nurturing and managing technology driven startups.  Mr. Kariv holds a B.A. in Economics from Harvard University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Mr. Schor was the previous President and CEO of Synta Pharmaceuticals.  He has over fifteen years of leadership experience in biotechnology, medical devices, business development and private equity.  Mr. Schor served as Vice President, Global Branded Products Business Development and Pipeline Management at Teva Pharmaceuticals and in leadership positions at several emerging private and public companies.  During his career, Mr. Schor has executed licensing and M&A transactions valued at over $8 billion with partners that include GSK, Amgen, Pfizer, Merck KGaA and OncoGeneX, among others. Mr. Schor was a Partner at Yozma Venture Capital, where he led the foundation and growth of multiple therapeutic companies from inception to significant commercial success and exit.  Mr. Schor holds an M.B.A., a B.A. in Biology, a B.A. in Economics and is a certified public accountant.

Mr. Lifschitz is co-founder, CEO, and General Partner of Peregrine Ventures.  On behalf of the fund, he serves on the Boards of many of the portfolio companies, including Valtech Cardio (recently acquired by Edwards Lifesciences), NLT Spine, and CardioNova.  Prior to founding Peregrine Ventures, Mr. Lifschitz co-founded and led the business development efforts of a number of medical technology companies including: PharmaSys (acquired by Elan), ECR (acquired by AVX), Visioncare Ophthalmic Technologies, and BioControl Ltd. Eyal also served as a Director of Given Imaging (NASDAQ: GIVN) from 2003-2007.

Dr. Eliat is a seasoned entrepreneur, inventor and founder of several companies mainly in the fields of drug delivery.  Four of his companies have advanced to advanced clinical stages of development.  Dr. Eilat received an M.D. degree from the Sackler School of Medicine in Tel Aviv University, and a Ph.D. degree in Immunology from the Weizmann Institute of Science.  He is the inventor of numerous patents in the medical and biotechnology fields.