The Brain on Drugs

Image shows an illuminated brain scan

Event schedule details

Sunday 18 June


Event location details

Ondaatje Lecture Theatre

Royal Geographical Society

Professor David Nutt explores the history of mind-altering drugs in science and society.

In the 1790s the great chemist Humphrey Davy discovered the wonderous, mind-altering potential of nitrous oxide – describing its ability to invoke ‘heightened imagination’. What Davy was experiencing and how useful it could be are still important scientific questions today, bringing together those investigating the neuroscience of consciousness, creative thinking and enhanced mental state, with those mapping the effects various drugs have on the brain.

From Davy’s initial laughing gas lab notes, Professor David Nutt, Director of Imperial’s Neuropsychopharmacology Unit will take you on a 250 year tour of scientific enquiry into the origins of cognitive performance and creativity, and how they could be chemically improved or enhanced.

Discover more from the 'Moments of Wonder' talk series

Visitor information

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Event categories

  • Adults
  • Talks and tours
Image shows an illuminated brain scan