Aculight Corp., a Bothell, Wash., maker of laser-based products, has signed a license agreement with Vanderbilt University of Nashville, Tenn., for intellectual property related to the optical stimulation of neural tissue. This technology was the foundation for Aculight's first medical research product, the Capella R-1850 infrared neural stimulator (INS), a fiber-coupled laser that generates pulsed, midinfrared light. "Our license agreement with Vanderbilt grew out of a joint development effort to produce a compact, low-cost, infrared nerve stimulator that is superior to the electrical stimulators ubiquitous in neurological applications," said Mark Bendett, director of product development. "The INS technology addresses both established and emerging research and clinical applications; it has the potential to open up new methods of research in neurology and to dramatically accelerate the treatment of a wide range of diseases and conditions." Neuroscientists use nerve stimulation to investigate the function of the nervous system and to research diseases such as multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's. Neural stimulation is also used in clinical applications such as nerve monitoring during surgical resection, treatment of chronic conditions such as pain and depression, and Parkinson's tremors. Aculight said it will use this INS technology to produce a line of clinical devices over the next several years.