Researchers from Stanford have revealed ‘potalyzer ‘ – a device that can measure whether people are under the influence of marijuana or not. The researchers have claimed that potalyzer can help the police as it provides the precise measurement of driver’s marijuana intoxication. But before starting this article, let’s talk about Tetrahydrocannabinol.
Tetrahydrocannabinol or THC is a chemical substance that is responsible for the psychological effects that happen after the usage of Marijuana. There is a presence of Cannabinoid receptors in certain parts of our brain that are associated with thinking, memory, pleasure, time perception and coordination. THC can activate these receptors, and alter our thoughts, movements, concentration creating a euphoria-like feeling.
After marijuana is ingested or inhaled, THC molecule can also be found in saliva. This is when the newly revealed mobile device will come into effect. Police can collect a spit sample in a cotton swab, run it through some tests and get the results on their laptops and smartphones, in just three minutes. The device basically uses magnetic biosensors to detect the tiny THC molecule in saliva or spit. It simply works using magnetic nanotechnology, previously used as a cancer screen. And the potalyzer doesn’t just check whether a person is under the influence or marijuana or not. It can also check the concentration of its usage.
The device uses Bluetooth to communicate the results to laptops and smartphones
Potalyzer can reveal THC if their concentration ranges from 0 to 50 nanograms per milliliter of saliva. The researchers achieved such precision by harnessing the behavior of magnetism in nanoparticles, which measure just a few tens of billionths of a meter.
This device could be a major breakthrough as countries, where marijuana is legalized, have been trying to look for a device that can measure people’s marijuana intoxication as effectively as breathalyzer can work to check the level of alcohol intoxication.