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Crayfish get drunk faster when they’ve been hanging out with friends

Young crayfish can get drunk — and they get drunk a lot faster when they’ve been hanging out with their friends, new research says. So, extroverted crayfish may want to consider pacing themselves this weekend.

Crayfish are basically miniature, freshwater lobsters, which makes them an unusual model organism for trying to understand a behavior — drinking alcohol — that we really only care about in humans. They’re not mammals. They don’t even have backbones. But, like us, they’re social creatures, and they can get sloshed. So, a group of researchers at the University of Maryland turned to crayfish to understand how social experience changes how booze affects the brain.

The researchers gathered up a bunch of young…

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Rachel Becker

The author Rachel Becker