Joseph Stauffer, DO, MBA

Joseph Stauffer, DO, MBA

Joe Stauffer

Joseph Stauffer, DO, MBA

Chief Medical Officer


Dr. Stauffer is an executive physician and the Chief Medical Officer at Cara Therapeutics. Prior to joining CARA, he served as CMO at both public and private biopharma and specialty pharma companies. From 2004-2009, he was CMO at Alpharma Pharmaceuticals and the architect of the clinical development program for EMBEDA, the first abuse-deterrent long-acting opioid analgesic approved by the FDA.

Joe began his industry career as Global Medical Director at Abbott Laboratories. Prior to Abbott he worked at FDA as a Medical Review Officer in the Anti-Inflammatory & Analgesic Division of the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. While there, he reviewed Investigational New Drug (IND) Applications and New Drug Applications (NDA) for opiate, non-opiate, anti-inflammatory, topical and novel analgesic compounds. Disease areas included: rheumatoid/osteo/psoriatic arthritis, AS, PHN, DPN, post-operative, acute/chronic pain, Multiple Sclerosis and other rare diseases. He serves as an expert clinical research reviewer for the European Commission, and has spoken internationally on topics ranging from clinical development, medical affairs, investor relations and the FDA regulatory process.

Dr. Stauffer has over 20 years of medical practice and clinical research experience. He practiced clinically for eight years, first as a Navy general medicine physician and then as an Anesthesiologist. He completed residency training in Anesthesiology & Critical Care Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University Hospital and maintains an appointment as part-time Assistant Professor in the Department of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.  He was honorably discharged from the US Navy as a Lieutenant Commander in 2001.  He received his MBA from a joint program (TRIUM) between New York University, Stern School of Business, London School of Economics (LSE) and HEC (Hautes Etudes Commerciales) School of Management in Paris.