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Brit boffin brews INSTANT HANGOVER RELIEF

Former drugs advisor Prof David Nutt spruiks for alcohol with an ANTIDOTE

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

Professor David Nutt, a boffin who has advised the UK government on drugs policy and now holds the Edmond J Safra chair in Neuropsychopharmacology at Imperial College, London, is brewing a new drug that will replicate the sensations produced by alcohol but also be instantly reversible and not produce hangovers.

Speaking to the BBC, which has posted its interview with the Prof here, Nutt says science now knows which of the brain's neurotransmitters respond to alcohol and that he thinks it is possible to give those bits of brain the same kind of jolt “with drugs that are much less toxic” than booze.

“Because they are drugs and work on a receptor directly, we can have an antidote,” he added.

Nutt says the experimental drugs he's brewed in the past produce effects indistinguishable from alcohol. He's now identified “three or four candidate molecules” to do the job without also inflicting hangovers. The Professor also feels it may be possible to create alcohol substitutes that don't trigger addiction.

Standing between Nutt and further innovation, he says, are drug laws that make the legal status of his proposed drugs uncertain. That's making the task of finding investors tricky, so he hopes the UK government can set that to rights so he can get on with it and find a way to offer drinkers a tipple without a hangover or the chance of addiction.

If the laws are changed, he feels the UK and indeed the world stand on the threshold of health improvements and cost savings galore once alcoholism is dispelled and hangovers become a thing of the past.

The interview does not include a mention of the potential impact on sales of kebabs, bacon sandwiches or fizzy vitamin water, all crucial sectors of most developed economies. ®

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