Setting the new standard.End pain. Restore health.

Leveraging human biology to deliver innovative non-opioid medicines for pain

Our Science

Pain is one of the most common reasons we seek medical care. The causes of pain are abundant, including acute or chronic injuries, surgical intervention, and underlying diseases. The standard of care has been unchanged for decades – non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, acetaminophen, and opioids, supplemented by anticonvulsants, antidepressants, and local anesthetics as adjunctive therapies. There is a need for new therapies that provide better pain relief, have fewer side effects, and eliminate the risk of abuse or dependence. Patients deserve non-addictive medicines to live healthy pain-free lives.

We believe that if you want different results, you need a different approach. At Latigo, our science is built on human biology. We utilize our insights and extensive experience to create new classes of pain medicines with enhanced effectiveness, reduced side effects and without the risk of abuse or dependence.

Right Target

Our targets are grounded in human biology. Every target in our portfolio is identified by human genetics and/or pharmacology. Targets are then processed through our validation platform to demonstrate their role in human pain and define the mechanism of action.

Right Drug

We only advance the right drugs. Novel compounds are generated against these targets using state-of-the-art computer-assisted, structure-based, and knowledge-based design techniques. The best compounds are evaluated in human model systems to show and measure target engagement. We ensure potency, selectivity, and the ability of the compound to block pain signals. This knowledge augments our likelihood of clinical success.

Right Site

Even the best drug cannot be effective in providing pain relief if it is not reaching the target. Therefore, an important component of our drug discovery effort is to ensure that the medicines we advance effectively access the tissue of interest where the target is expressed. If a medicine is unable to reach the target, it will not be effective as an analgesic.


Leadership Team

Our leadership team is comprised of seasoned executives with track records translating scientific discoveries into successful global drug approvals.

Desmond Padhi, Pharm.D

Interim Chief Executive Officer

Bryan Moyer, Ph.D.

Senior Vice President, Discovery

Mike Kaufman, Ph.D.

Vice President, Chemistry

Board of Directors


Hyung Chun, M.D.

Director, Foresite Capital


Sean Harper, M.D.

Founding Managing Director, Westlake Village Biopartners


Deborah Palestrant, Ph.D.

Partner, 5AM Ventures and Executive Chair, 4:59 Initiative


Nancy Stagliano, Ph.D.

Chair, Board of Directors


Desmond Padhi, Pharm.D

CEO (Interim), Latigo Biotherapeutics

Join our team

Latigo was founded in 2019. We are a team that is science-based, patient-focused, and forward-thinking. We are passionate about what we do and envision a world where people who are suffering from pain do not need to decide between living with pain or addiction. If pushing boundaries and engaging in open dialogue excites rather than intimidates you, we would love to hear from you.

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Our values

We value the scientific rigor and collaboration necessary to change the lives of patients and create a rewarding work environment for our employees.


Our name comes from the Latigo Canyon in Los Angeles, CA, a canyon that connects the Pacific Ocean to the Santa Monica mountains. This connectivity mirrors our own as a cohesive team committed to the patients we seek to serve. The topography of the canyon with its steep winding trails reminds us of the drug discovery journey and that spectacular views await those that persevere to the top.