Prizm Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced Thursday it hascompleted a $6 million round of venture financing, its firstsince the San Diego company was founded last summer with$500,000 in seed funding from Domain Associates andBiotechnology Investments Ltd.

New investors in this round were Oxford Bioscience Partners,The Sprout Group, Techno Venture Management, SorrentoVentures and Forward Ventures.

"The successful completion of this financing puts us in aposition to advance our initial product candidates fromresearch and preclinical development toward the clinicaltesting stage," said Tina Berger, chief operating officer.

The lead products in development are a preventive for re-clogging of arteries following angioplasty and a diagnostic formalignant melanoma. Both are based on natural regulatorymechanisms for fibroblast growth factor, whose receptors areonly expressed on activated or injured cells. Prizm intends totarget these areas with growth factor-drug combinations.

The technology is based on research by the Whittier Institute, anon-profit research group in San Diego formed by formerscientists from the Salk Institute. Whittier has received anundisclosed amount of stock in Prizm in exchange for exclusiverights to FGF receptor regulation research.

-- Nancy Garcia Associate Editor

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