Spotlight on Glenn Cornett, M.D., Ph.D: Kurve’s Chief Science Officer

Glenn Cornett, M.D., Ph.D., is the perfect blend of creativity and scientific brilliance. If you aren’t acquainted with the field of science, you may believe that it lacks creativity, that it sounds rigid, or is devoid of imagination. That is far from the truth — and Kurve’s Chief Science Officer is the proof of concept.

Glenn embodies the notion that a scientific mind can also be vastly virtuosic. Perhaps it’s due to his musical upbringing — as a child, and through high school, Glenn trained as a classical musician, specifically playing the trombone and piano. At sixteen, he realized that learning chemistry came very easy to him, and what he loved most about music — composing — could translate into a career of his own design in science and medicine.

Today, Kurve’s Chief Science Officer lives out both of his passions synchronously. He has led an impressive career in science as a biotech entrepreneur and advisor and is the founder and managing director of Spectrum NYC, a non-profit contemporary music and arts venue.

Chief Science Officer: The Science of It All

Christina: As Kurve’s CSO, what does your role entail?

Glenn: We all collectively cover all the bases and work together towards Kurve’s primary goal. Whether that’s corporate development, sourcing deals, and the like. But more specifically, I handle a lot of the science. It’s a bit amusing because the overall science driving the company in terms of the Controlled Particle Dispersion technology is the aerosol science which is driven by the inventor and CEO, Marc Giroux. What I do is put together the overall scientific story from a medical act, taking abstract findings from Marc’s work and vice versa. With my background in science and medicine, I also keep a close eye on what’s happening in the field in general — both in terms of Alzheimer’s and intranasal medication, in particular intranasal insulin.

An important part of the role has been to put together the actual mechanistic story. A lot of people say that Alzheimer’s is like type three diabetes, or specifically is type three diabetes. There’s insulin resistance in the brain, and, as a result, the brain works less well in the context of Alzheimer’s. Indeed, people with diabetes have a 50% higher chance of developing Alzheimer’s, it’s not a trivial association. If we look at systemic diabetes as opposed to insulin resistance in the brain, type two diabetes, in general, is essentially a fairly advanced insulin resistance.

One of the things that I’ve done as a chief science officer is helping connect the dots and figure out what the mechanism is likely to be for what we’re doing.

The Kurve Therapeutics C-level team wasn’t cultivated in a standard way; both the Chief Science Officer and Chief Operating Officer had worked for or with the CEO and founder in their own ways before officially joining the team. The advantage? A dedication and faith in the company, its mission, and its potential that could not be replicated otherwise.

Christina: How and when did you decide to join the Kurve team?

Glenn: Well, it was sort of a natural progression, really. Marc and I had been working together for a while on oxytocin and autism. So while we were working together, I — as a matter of curiosity — wanted to see what else was happening in fields closely associated with mine. I realized that there was a lot of work out there with Marc’s device in Alzheimer’s and some interesting work in Parkinson’s as well, conducted by academic medical centers. So I approached Marc and said, “Do you realize you have all the extent of intellectual property in a treatment that is in peer-reviewed publications versus placebo, shown to be effective in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s? We should start a drug product company, instead of just a drug-device company.” The idea was that with a drug product company, we could actually control what happened with the development.

Marc had already been doing a lot of great work in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s — I didn’t change any of that. I changed how we could translate that great work into something that benefits humanity more directly.

Backed by years of expertise, Glenn’s vision helps guide Kurve’s next steps in drug formulations, target diseases, and push the limits of what’s been done before.

“The principal strategic thrust right now is Alzheimer’s, and we’re thrilled with that.”

M.D., Ph.D., Biotech Entrepreneur

Glenn Cornett, M.D., Ph.D. is more than a scientist. As a biotech entrepreneur and advisor, he has spent decades working in various industries in and out of the field of science. His background includes heading up a research strategy unity at Eli Lilly, where he developed a financial model used for the Cialis acquisition; consulting at McKinsey for high-tech, heavy industry, and healthcare sectors; authoring a monograph on plutonium and public health policy at Los Alamos National Laboratory; and developing drugs for psychiatric and neurological indications.

Dr. Glenn Cornett holds an M.D. with Distinction in Research from the University of Michigan and a Ph.D. in neuroscience from UCLA. Suffice it to say, he is an expert in his field.

Christina: You hold an MD and a Ph.D. Is that common in your field? Does that make you a super expert?

Glenn: When I decided to pursue an M.D.-Ph.D., it was not that common at the time. I believe I had about 160 classmates at the University of Michigan, and only around a dozen were M.D.-Ph.D. students. I went to UCLA for my Ph.D. to do research I could not do at Michigan. I wanted to work with a significant number of patients who had deep-brain electrodes implanted for the evaluation of epilepsy. The idea is that you can present stimuli to these patients when they’re not part of a clinical procedure that evaluates the seizure itself. For my dissertation, I presented musical stimuli and analyzed the brainwave coincidence with the musical stimuli. This was me tying together my musical interests and passions with my research, which allowed me to learn a lot about neurochemistry and the brain.

Despite obtaining both an M.D. and Ph.D., Glenn wanted to forge his own path, different from what his fellow graduates would do. His driving force was to make a distinctive contribution to the world. Instead of continuing with a residency at a major hospital or research facility, he took an offer from McKinsey, a consulting firm. He considers this his post-doc in business.

With a dissertation on multidisciplinary solutions to complex problems — a combination of neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, systemic musicology, and psychoacoustics — creating a career of his own design was what ignited him most.

Kurve Therapeutics: Transforming the Neurodegenerative Disease Treatment Landscape

When asked about his work on plutonium at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, Dr. Cornett did not cease to impress.

“I wrote a book that largely focused on monitoring air quality coming out of the filtration system at nuclear weapons facilities. As a result, I learned a lot about aerosol science digest. I was a member of the American Association for Aerosol Research and learned a lot about con cascade impactors, fluid dynamics, and various other factors. I am, by historical accident, distinctly qualified for playing on this team — I am uniquely situated for someone trying to help an aerosol scientist like Marc [Giroux] treat neurological diseases.”

Christina: There are so many people suffering from neurodegenerative diseases. Why hasn’t a cure or at least an effective treatment been developed?

Glenn: Well, there are two main problems — one is figuring out what to do with the brain, and the second is actually doing it, right? Figuring out the mechanism of action is important. The beta-amyloid hypothesis has been dominant since the 1990s. It’s the idea that there is a protein called the beta-amyloid that builds up in the brain and drives a significant aspect of Alzheimer’s pathology. There has been a disproportionate investment in that area which has been influenced by major players, and, as a result, other approaches that could have been useful have been sidelined.

One of those new approaches was intranasal insulin for Alzheimer’s. Glenn explained that insulin is much more challenging to get into the bloodstream and the blood-brain barrier. If you manage to get insulin into the brain systemically, it means you’re putting a lot into the system and causing hypoglycemia. If, however, you take Kurve’s route and deliver it directly into the brain with minimal systemic exposure, the results are much more favorable — as shown in Kurve’s multiple clinical trial results, which Glenn notes are “really strong proof that Kurve is doing something that others are not.”

Christina: What are the biggest and most challenging diseases that you believe Kurve can conquer?

Glenn: Glioblastoma is one of the big ones. It’s the most feared because brain cancer is not as common as, say, breast or lung cancer, but it is nonetheless emotionally very charged. It tends to occur in younger patients than in a lot of other cancers. 

[note: include the stem cell press release here when it is approved and distributed in September]

Add a Little Music to Your Science

As much as Glenn lights up when he talks about science, delivering drugs effectively and directly to the brain, and the nitty-gritty details of molecules and compounds that make the layman’s head spin, he lights up even more when he speaks about music. 

As the founder and managing director of Spectrum NYC, Glenn has effectively joined both of his driving passions into one stellar life. 

Spectrum was started in 2008 as a foundation to support other people’s music and quickly evolved into a safe haven for the contemporary arts. 

“When I moved to New York City, I ended up getting a loft apartment and bringing this nine-foot Steinway piano that I had in Palo Alto. I would host concerts in my living room, which I consider the early days of Spectrum. It was this loft experience which then became the foundation.”

Glenn has played host to a variety of musical genres, artists, and performers throughout the years. He fondly recalled putting on a debut performance at his Ludlow Street loft, whose walls are famously lined with hundreds of books. When a mosh pit broke out during the set, a sixteen-year-old said “Yes, even in this bookstore.” Glenn considers this one of the highlights of running a new music venue. 

The venue has since moved out of Glenn’s loft apartment and has taken residence in Red Hook, Brooklyn, where there have been over 2,400 concerts since its 2012 grand opening.

[Glenn to add a few words about Brian, perhaps dedicate this post to Brian]

I asked Glenn what he believed his superpower to be, and, unsurprisingly, it is his intellectual energy, curiosity, and enthusiasm. His love of connecting the dots allows him to bridge gaps between multiple fields of interest. He identifies things that other people don’t recognize and connects them in a way that translates into an actionable insight that allows, for instance, to treat a disease better. 

The Next Phase

Kurve Therapeutics’ next-gen technology is Phase III-ready on three separate disease states. This means they are just one Phase III clinical trial away from FDA approval and market launch. The majority of drug formulations and medtech innovations do not make it past Phase II. When it comes to Alzheimer’s treatments, those statistics are even slimmer. 

Kurve’s clinical trials have shown remarkable results, as is evident by their 18 peer-reviewed publications in leading medical journals and their collaborations with renowned research centers such as Harvard and Johns Hopkins.

Christina: How long will Phase III trials take?

Glenn: That really depends, of course, on simple mathematics; how quickly we enroll at each site and the total number of sites. Given the size we anticipate, we hope to enroll within a year and the study itself will last a year. 

Christina: What are your hopes for Phase III trials?

Glenn: What we’re hoping for is, as in previous studies, to show significant improvements versus placebo in cognition. What I’d love to also do is to show how we improve the quality of life for these patients. In the past, we have seen that the quality of life versus placebo is definitely improving and measurable. This will enable us to translate results into health economics terms, but also tell a story for the caregivers. We want to show that their need to devote so much time to taking care of their loved ones could actually be reduced — that they could have more freedom in life. We want to not only show a significant improvement in the quality of life for patients but for caregivers as well. 

Christina: That’s an important story to tell. Approximately 60% of informal caregivers for Alzheimer’s patients suffer from emotional stress and depression. About 25% of female familial caregivers are also considered “sandwich caregivers,” meaning they take care of a parent with Alzheimer’s and a child under 18 years of age, so it definitely takes a toll on them. I remember watching my mother care for my grandmother when she was dying from Alzheimer’s — the toll it took on her physically and emotionally was very crushing to see. 

Glenn: Exactly. That’s one of the most important stories of a drug that is truly disease-modifying, which we’re pretty clear that we have. We want to be able to measure and show that this type of suffering — for patients and caregivers — doesn’t have to be the standard anymore. 

Kurve Therapeutics is certainly the light amidst the darkness that is Alzheimer’s disease. Over 55 million patients suffer from the disease globally, a substantial number that does not include the millions of loved ones who suffer right alongside them. Advancing treatments for debilitating diseases such as Alzheimer’s is not just about doing what’s never been done before — it’s about affecting real change for countless people across the globe. 

Kurve’s Regulation A+ Offering

Kurve has launched its Regulation A+ offering, open to the general public for investments. This means anyone can become an investor in Kurve’s next-gen medtech and drug formulations and become part of Kurve’s journey to more efficient treatments for neurodegenerative diseases. 

Kurve’s patented technology is one Phase III clinical trial away from being ready for market launch. The millions of people suffering from central nervous system disorders without sufficient treatment options need Kurve’s help — and yours. 

Visit to learn how you can be a part of reshaping the future for millions of patients.

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