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Would it be possible to realistically invent a substance that causes insomnia? What would be the uses and consequences of such a substance?

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closed as off-topic by bowlturner, Serban Tanasa, grimmsdottir, Vincent, Ghanima Mar 28 '15 at 15:05

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "This question does not appear to be about worldbuilding, within the scope defined in the help center." – bowlturner, Serban Tanasa, grimmsdottir, Vincent, Ghanima
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ How does this fit into world building? $\endgroup$ – bowlturner Mar 28 '15 at 11:42
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    $\begingroup$ Anything can fit into world building :p $\endgroup$ – Andreas Hartmann Mar 28 '15 at 11:57
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    $\begingroup$ This question look simple enough to be answered by a short Google search. Unless you are looking for something specific. $\endgroup$ – Vincent Mar 28 '15 at 15:11
  • $\begingroup$ A somewhat, high dose of methamphetamine should work well, I think. It's metabolized to amphetamine. $\endgroup$ – Volker Siegel May 10 '17 at 19:45
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Yes - anything that inhibits melatonin. A more detailed explanation can be found at this link

The major cause of insomnia is the failure of the body to produce sufficient amounts of the neurotransmitter melatonin. This chemical induces us to sleep in conditions of total darkness.

Thus, theoretically, if you could find something that inhibits the production of melatonin or causes serotonin deficiency, then that should cause insomnia.

Edit: There is a list of drugs that cause insomnia at the end of the link given, but they would have other side-effects and may cause insomnia due to other reasons.

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