AAP

NRL premiers Melbourne have added journeyman forward Dayne Weston to their ranks immediately after he was granted an early release from Penrith.

The 26-year-old Weston has played 33 games for Penrith since arriving in 2011 via Cronulla and North Queensland but has failed to secure a start with the 13th-placed Panthers this season.

He will play out the season with the Storm, who remain on top of the ladder despite suffering their first loss of 2013 at the weekend when beaten at home by Canberra.

Panthers general manager rugby league Phil Moss said: "Dayne played many strong games for the Panthers after joining us in 2011, and has been a well-liked member of our club.

"We wish him and his family all the best for their future in Melbourne."

Melbourne GM Football Frank Ponissi said Weston brought invaluable NRL experience to the Storm's playing roster, providing versatility and important depth, along with a great opportunity for the talented front-rower to reignite his career.

"At the end of 2012, we lost two very experienced props. We signed Junior Moors, so we were always looking for another front-rower to get through the long season.

"We have a number of promising young props yet to make their debuts, therefore we needed a front-rower with NRL experience and Dayne fits the bill perfectly.

"Dayne's strong desire to play at Melbourne Storm has impressed us and we look forward to him joining the club," Ponissi said.

The Storm said Weston would start training on Monday.

Weston made his NRL debut in round five in 2007 for Cronulla against Wests Tigers.