A former UK government drugs adviser has created a molecule which, if approved by regulators, will allow the benefits of drinking without without the health implications.
Professor David Nutt has developed a new chemical, called Alcarelle, that mimics the effects of alcohol. He is currently raising cash to fund its launch and hopes the public will be drinking it in years to come.
Alcarelle is touted as being able to activate the same areas of the brain but keeps drinkers in the “two pint” zone all night so they can stay chatty and relaxed without descending into an alcoholic haze.
A controversial figure and a longtime critic of government drugs policy, Professor Nutt has been developing Alcarelle at his company GABA Labs, named after the neurotransmitter in the brain which reacts to alcohol. The business raised seed funding in 2018 and is now hoping to raise more cash to bring his alcohol alternative to the masses.
“I have a litre of Alcarelle on my shelf. It’s made, I’ve tested it myself,” says Nutt, who is director of the Neuropsychopharmacology Unit at Imperial College.
The hope is that this product will be able to provide a third way between alcoholic drinks and non-alcoholic drinks.