Your Brain on Vodka, Dope, Benadryl and More
A group of neuroscientists are using new technology to understand how the brain performs under the influence of drugs
Alan Gevins and his team at SAM Technology in San Francisco are nearing the end of a large study analyzing the effects of various drugs on cognitive performance. An editor at Technology Review recently visited their offices, and downed a stiff cocktail, to experience their work first-hand.
Gevins uses a combination of electroencephalography (EEG) and cognitive tests to measure the effects of alcohol, marijuana, caffeine and other drugs on attention, working memory, the ability to multi-task and more. His company intends to commercialize the testing technology they’ve developed, hoping that it could help doctors measure a person’s cognitive decline, or even adjust prescriptions to keep side effects at a minimum.