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Students Create Nail Polish that can Detect Date Rape Drugs

Update Date: Aug 25, 2014 10:27 AM EDT
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Women might have another reason to spend time painting their fingernails. According to four undergraduate students at North Carolina State University, they are in the process of developing a nail polish product can accurately detect date rape drugs in drinks. The students, who are all men, hope that this product, when finalized, can combat rape.

"Our goal is to invent technologies that empower women to protect themselves from this heinous and quietly pervasive crime," the inventors, Ankesh Madan, Stephen Gray, Tasso Von Windheim, and Tyler Confrey-Maloney stated reported by FOX News.

"All of us have been close to someone who has been through the terrible experience, and we began to focus on preventive solutions, especially those that could be integrated into products that women already use," Madan told Higher Education Works reported The DailyMail. "And so the idea of creating a nail polish that detects date rape drugs was born."

The product is called Undercover Colors. Once painted on the nails, the product works by changing colors when dipped in a drink that has been drugged. Popular date rape drugs, such as Rohypnol, gamma hydroxybutyric (GHB) and ketamine cannot be detected easily because they do not have a color, odor or taste. The drugs work by causing weakness followed by confusion and potentially loss of consciousness.

Around one in five women has experienced rape, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)) reported. About one in three of these cases happens to collage-aged women. This product has the potential to change these rates for the better.

"​Through this nail polish and similar technologies, we hope to make potential perpetrators afraid to spike a woman's drink because there's now a risk that they can get caught," the students said.

There is currently no release date for the nail polish. For more information, visit the Undercover Colors Facebook page here.

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