Geron Corp., a private company based in Menlo Park, Calif., hascompleted its third round of venture capital financing, raising $12.6million.The additional funds came from new and current investors, saidGeron's Jeryl Hilleman, vice president of finance and administration.She declined to identify the new investors.Seven current investors, who contributed more than half of the newfinancing, are Kleiner Perkins, also of Menlo Park; Domain Associates,of Princeton, N.J.; Biotechnology Industry Ltd., of London; OxfordVenture, of Stamford, Conn.; C.W. Group and Venrock Co., both ofNew York; and Aetna Insurance Group, of Hartford, Conn.With the addition of $12.6 million, the company has raised $31.1million since it was formed in 1992.Hilleman said the new financing will be used to support the company'sresearch into therapeutics for treating age-related diseases.She said Geron's research focuses on two main programs _modulating cell senescence to restore normal function in aging cellsand inducing tumor cell death by inhibiting telomerase, which is anenzyme believed to be responsible for cancer cell immortality. _Charles Craig
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