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Shares of XenoPort Inc. sank Monday after the drug developer said a potential treatment for multiple sclerosis patients failed in late-stage clinical testing, and it will stop developing the drug.

The Santa Clara, Calif., company said the treatment, labeled arbaclofen placarbil, failed to show a statistically significant improvement for patients taking it compared to a fake drug. XenoPort was testing the drug to treat patients with spasticity due to multiple sclerosis.

The study involved 228 patients at 30 U.S. sites.

Spasticity is a condition connected to some neurological disorders and injury to the spinal cord. It can cause decreased range of motion, weakness, and coordination problems. Multiple sclerosis is a disease in which the immune system attacks healthy nerves. It can cause pain, numbness, slurred speech, impaired vision, muscle weakness, and neurological problems.

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