Stephen Carrithers, PhD

Program Director
I-RED Pilot Program


Dr. Stephen Carrithers is an accomplished, innovative, and detail-oriented scientist-executive and serial entrepreneur with over 25-years experience in developing and commercializing technologies within the clinical diagnostics and therapeutics space from bench-to-bedside. He has founded or co-founded six different biotechnology companies with projects at different stages in development from basic research programs, proof-of-concept, feasibility, R&D, pre-clinical and clinical validation, clinical trials, and CGMP manufacturing. In turn, he has led efforts in FDA and PreSubmission discussions, licensing, material transfers, strategic partnerships, and exit strategies. Dr. Carrithers has been awarded over $12M in nondilutive funds and grants (including >$10M in SBIR/STTR awards), raised over $6M in dilutive funds, and is currently leading a Series A (debt and equity) for his latest biotechnology endeavor, PrognostX Health, in which he serves as the CEO, President, and Director of Innovation. Dr. Carrithers has a deep understanding and extensive proficiency in grants portfolio management, grant writing, evaluation of innovation, cross-functional funding strategy development, life sciences research, biotechnologies and commercialization thereof, policy development-implementation-coaching, budgeting/financial management (at the grant level and corporate level including budget design, strategy, and compliance), financial projections, and overall project management & execution across diverse sectors from academia to start-ups to biopharma companies as founder, director, advisor, investor, and board member.

Dr. Carrithers enjoys leading and coaching high-performing teams, establishing a collaborative, inclusive, and intellectually rigorous team culture, and engaging intellectually with the scientific community and internal/external stakeholders. He currently serves as Chair of the KYNETIC (NIH-REACH) external review board and serves as chair/member of SBIR/STTR and basic science study sections and special emphasis panels. He has also served as advisor and C-suite/CEO-coach to over 20 biotechnology/biopharma companies, academic-focused commercialization training programs, and non-profits. His career path has afforded him the opportunity to review, assess, and evaluate over 1000 innovative projects in science, technology, engineering, and AI/ML as it applies to medical devices, assessing clinical utility, and innovation in health and human services. Dr. Carrithers completed his B.Sc. at Georgetown College with a double major in Biology and Chemistry and his Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Louisville School of Medicine. He conducted his post-doctoral fellowship in Clinical Pharmacology at Thomas Jefferson University Medical School in Philadelphia. Prior to running his own biotech companies, he was an Assistant Professor at the University of Kentucky Medical Center, Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Infectious Disease (joint appt with Department of Physiology, UKMC and the VA Medical Center (GS-13)).