New alcohol promises all the benefits with no hangovers

Blue wine? Nearly half a million bottles were sold last year by Gik Live! a Spanish startup set up by a group of university students . AFP/File/GABRIEL BOUYS

The researcher believes alcohol will not exist in its current form by 2050.

Drinking alcohol has two distinct downsides, the hangover and the potential for drinking too much and getting out of control. Now a scientist claims he has invented a product that takes care of both of those worries.

Professor David Nutt has explained his synthetic alcohol, branded as Alcarelle, is ready for use, but still needs to be regulated – a process he expects to take between three and five years.

Nutt explains that Alcosynth, the name given to the molecule, will still give people the same fuzzy feeling of drinking regular alcohol, but has been designed so that it is impossible to end up out of control or hungover. Additionally, his team says the new alternative won’t be toxic to the liver like alcohol is.

“There will obviously be testing to check the molecule is safe … And we need to show that it’s different from alcohol. We will demonstrate that it doesn’t produce toxicity like alcohol does,” Nutt said.

“Alcohol binds to all 15 different Gaba receptor subtypes,” Professor Nutt said. “Some of those can induce the tipsiness without the side effects”.

“We know where in the brain alcohol has its ‘good’ effects and ‘bad’ effects, and what particular receptors mediate that – Gaba, glutamate, and other ones, such as serotonin and dopamine … The effects of alcohol are complicated but … you can target the parts of the brain you want to target.”

Nutt believes alcohol won’t exist in its current form by 2050.

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