13 January 2010

Talking point: Does cocaine make you more intelligent?

In a new twist to the 80's revival, neuroscientist Ian Maze in New York has found cocaine can boost your brainpower. He has discovered that doing lots of coke suppresses a protein called G9a, which is linked to your learning ability. 
 
The science goes like this: cocaine suppresses the growth of dendritic spines in your neurons, and people with learning difficulties have longer dendritic spines.
 
Of course, there’s no way doctors are going to come out in support of taking cocaine. Maze and his team of neuroscientists found that the only thing addicts learn is the connection between more drugs and a place or person.
 
What do you think? Should there be more research into the so-called benefits of illegal drugs, or is it just plain irresponsible?
 
- Kate Faithfull


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