DARA BioSciences Awarded Grants Totaling Approximately $500,000 for Its Two Drugs Advancing Through Clinical Studies

/ Source: GlobeNewswire

RALEIGH, N.C., Nov. 2, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- DARA BioSciences (Nasdaq:DARA) announced today grant approvals by the Internal Revenue Service under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 for KRN5500 and DB959 in the amount of approximately $500,000 for the calendar year 2009.

The IRS consulted with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in conducting the program. In order to qualify for consideration, the HHS had to certify the project qualified as a qualifying discovery project;

  1. Show reasonable potential to result in new therapies to treat areas of unmet medical need or prevent, detect, or treat chronic or acute disease and conditions;
  2. Reduce long-term health care costs in the U.S. or significantly advance to the goal of curing cancer within the 30 year period beginning May 21, 2010; and
  3. Be among those projects having the greatest potential to create and sustain (directly or indirectly) high quality, high-paying jobs in the U.S. and advance the U.S. competitiveness in the fields of life, biological, and medical sciences.

KRN5500 is a drug candidate for treating neuropathic pain in cancer patients. KRN5500 has successfully completed a Phase 2 clinical trial in which it met its primary endpoint of reduction of pain from baseline and was statistically significantly (p=0.03) better than placebo.

DB959 is a PPAR (peroxisome proliferator activated receptor) delta/gamma agonist, an oral drug in development for the treatment of Type 2 Diabetes.  DARA has recently completed a Phase I clinical study for DB959 and these results will be announced shortly.

About DARA BioSciences, Inc.

DARA BioSciences, Inc. is a Raleigh, North Carolina based biopharmaceutical development company that acquires promising therapeutic candidates and develops them through proof of concept in humans for subsequent sale or out-licensing to larger pharmaceutical companies. Presently DARA has two drug candidates with cleared IND (Investigational New Drug) Applications from the United States FDA. The Company has a pipeline of diverse drug candidates at various stages of development, with 82 granted patents and 56 pending applications (U.S. and foreign). The first drug candidate KRN5500 has successfully completed a Phase 2 clinical trial treating neuropathic pain in patients with cancer. KRN5500 met its primary endpoint and was statistically significantly (p=0.03) better than placebo. A second Phase 2 clinical trial is planned during the first half of 2011. The second drug candidate DB959 is a highly selective, non-thiazolidinedione (TZD), first-in-class dual PPAR (peroxisome proliferator activated receptor) delta/gamma agonist in development for type 2 diabetes. A Phase 1 clinical study for DB959 is underway and the Company plans to announce results in the second half of 2010.  In addition, DARA owns CPT-1 inhibitors intended for topical application for patients with psoriasis, a library of DDPIV inhibitors and a diverse library of approximately 1800 PPAR agonists of various molecular modalities. PPAR receptors are found throughout the human body and recent publications report that PPAR agonists may be useful in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, cystic fibrosis, liver disease, and a variety of autoimmune diseases. Because its diverse PPAR library has the potential to address the unmet medical needs of these diseases, the Company plans to explore several of these indications.

For more information please contact the Company at 919-872-5578 or visit our web site at .

CONTACT: Cameron Associates, Inc. Kevin McGrath 212.245.4577 Kevin@cameronassoc.com