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Sunesis Pharmaceuticals to Present Clinical Data at the 2006 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology

05/31/06

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., May 31, 2006 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX News Network/ -- Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: SNSS) today announced that the company will present data from its Phase I clinical studies of SNS-595 during the upcoming 2006 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) being held in Atlanta, Georgia June 2-6, 2006.

The presentation of a poster, "SNS-595 demonstrates clinical activity and dose-proportional pharmacokinetics (PK) in two phase I clinical studies" (Abstract #3062), will take place on Sunday, June 4, 2006 from 2:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. during the Developmental Therapeutics: Molecular Therapeutics session.

About Sunesis' Oncology Programs

Sunesis has built a portfolio of preclinical- and development-stage product candidates in oncology focused on novel pathways and targets, including inhibition of the cell cycle and survival signaling. SNS-595 is a promising first-in-class cancer therapeutic that selectively targets and kills proliferating cells during the DNA replication phase of the cell cycle. Currently in Phase II clinical development, SNS-595 works through the DNA-protein kinase and p73 dependent pathways to induce apoptosis, or programmed cell death. SNS-032 is in a Phase I/II clinical study to examine the safety and preliminary anti-tumor activity among patients with a variety of solid tumors, including lung cancer, breast cancer or melanoma. SNS-032 is a potent and selective inhibitor of cyclin-dependent kinases 2, 7 and 9. Sunesis is currently conducting preclinical studies of its Aurora kinase inhibitor drug candidate, SNS-314. In addition, in cooperation with Biogen Idec, Sunesis is developing novel small molecule inhibitors of Raf kinase and other oncology kinases.

About Sunesis Pharmaceuticals

Sunesis is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of novel small molecule therapeutics for oncology and other serious diseases. Sunesis has built a broad product candidate portfolio through internal discovery and in-licensing of novel cancer therapeutics. Sunesis is advancing its product candidates through in-house research and development efforts and strategic collaborations with leading pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical companies.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release may contain forward-looking statements that involve substantial risks and uncertainties. Sunesis may not actually achieve the plans, intentions or expectations contained in such forward-looking statements. Actual results or events could differ materially from the plans, intentions and expectations contained in such forward-looking statements. Sunesis does not assume any obligation to update any such forward-looking statements. For further information on Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, please visit http://www.sunesis.com.

SOURCE Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

investors, Eric Bjerkholt, CFO, of Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc., +1-650-266-3717; or
media, Karen L. Bergman, or Michelle Corral, both of BCC Partners, +1-650-575-1509,
or +1-415-794-8662, for Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
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