Interneuron Pharmaceuticals Inc. on Wednesday said PurdueUniversity has granted the company exclusive worldwiderights to dihydrexidine, a treatment that improves musclecontrol in patients with Parkinson's disease.

Dihydrexidine is a dopamine agonist that is thought to replacedopamine, which is deficient or absent in Parkinson's victims,by binding to the same D1 and D2 brain cell receptors.

"Studies have demonstrated that dihydrexidine is the firsthigh-potency, 'full-efficiency' dopamine agonist," said Dr. DavidNichols, a professor of medicinal chemistry at the universityand the principal researcher studying dihydrexidine.

"We plan to continue with preclinical studies and to move itinto the clinic," said company spokesman William Boni. Thecompany (NASDAQ:IPIC) also has exclusive worldwide rights tonew, improved analogs of dihydrexidine.

The Lexington, Mass., company is also conducting clinical trialsof a nutritional supplement of carbohydrates and proteins thatincreases the duration of l-dopa therapy for Parkinson'spatients, Boni said. "It is in the final stages of clinicaldevelopment, and we expect to have it on the market by theend of next year," he said.

Interneuron has given Elan Corp. plc the right to obtain anexclusive worldwide license to manufacture the supplement.

The stock gained 75 cents to $10. -- Kris Herbst

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