Research Projects

Functional Impairment Measurement Secondary to Cannabis/Marijuana Consumption: RRIPT

With 29 states having legal medicinal use of marijuana and nine having legal adult recreational use legal, marijuana and related impairment to function on the job, is a growing topic. Technology that can be used at any time to measure functional impairment is needed to supplement existing biologic measures. Urine does not detect immediate acute use as it takes hours to enter the system. Saliva only measures presence and not impairment. Functional testing that takes only minutes as a screening, is needed.

Background (Describe the current situation or problem in the industry, and how your idea would address it.)

A simple functional test that can be performed at the start of every shift will be valuable. The eye retina is a target organ that can be easily used to demonstrate retinal dysfunction with acute marijuana use. Simple thirty second visual screenings using an application in a tablet can measure whether or not the eye cells are dysfunctional because of acute marijuana use. The Journal of the American Medical Association reported that marijuana impairs retinal functioning. The Rapid Retinal Impairment Performance Test RRIPT uses small squares with stripes that alternate at 20 Hz. With acute marijuana use the stripes are not visible. The science behind this is complex, but the test itself is quick, sensitive and objective. The science, proof of efficacy is being reported at ARVO, Association Research Vision and Ophthalmology, this spring.

Objective (What is the desired product or result that will help the airport industry?)

With 29 states having legal medicinal use of marijuana and nine having legal adult recreational use legal, marijuana and related impairment to function on the job, is a growing topic. Technology that can be used at any time to measure functional impairment is needed to supplement existing biologic measures. Urine does not detect immediate acute use as it takes hours to enter the system. Saliva only measures presence and not impairment. Functional testing that takes only minutes as a screening, is needed.

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Idea No. 62