Synthetic Alcohol with No Hangover Effects
Synthetic Alcohol with No Hangover Effects: GABA Labs, a London-based company, is currently developing a synthetic alcohol known as ‘Alcarelle’ that is said to offer the relaxing effects of alcohol without any of the negative side effects such as hangovers or impaired balance.
The key ingredient in this synthetic alcohol is gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a neurotransmitter that produces a calming effect by blocking certain signals in the brain. When alcohol enters the brain, it binds to GABA receptors and produces similar relaxing and calming effects.
However, traditional alcohol also comes with undesirable consequences such as hangovers and difficulties with movement, speech, and cognition.
GABA Labs aims to address these issues by creating Alcarelle, a synthetic alcohol that provides all the positive effects of alcohol consumption without the accompanying drawbacks.
Dr. David Nutt, the founder of GABA Labs, described the experience of consuming Alcarelle as similar to having a glass of wine, inducing relaxation and increasing social engagement. In 2019, Dr. Nutt explained that they had identified the specific receptors in the brain responsible for alcohol’s positive and negative effects, such as GABA, glutamate, serotonin, and dopamine.
By targeting these specific areas of the brain, they hope to recreate the desired effects of alcohol while avoiding the negative ones.
Alcarelle itself is a tasteless substance that can be added to any drink, whether alcoholic or non-alcoholic, to enhance its intoxicating potential without negative side effects.
This breakthrough prospect is particularly significant considering the severe health risks associated with alcohol consumption. If people could experience the desired effects of alcohol without damaging their liver, heart, or brain, it could potentially save millions of lives.
Dr. Nutt expressed confidence that Alcarelle will deliver the desired effects, describing it as inducing relaxation, chattiness, and a mellow state.
He and his colleagues at GABA Labs are aiming to launch Alcarelle by 2026, although the development process has been hindered by slow regulatory approval. One challenge that Alcarelle may face is its synthetic nature, as opposed to traditional alcohol, which has been consumed for thousands of years.
However, the founders of GABA Labs argue that natural does not necessarily equate to being beneficial for health. Furthermore, they believe that the ability to enjoy the positive effects of alcohol without experiencing a hangover will be a compelling reason for many individuals to choose Alcarelle, even if it is not a natural product.