0.066 mg: That’s the average dose of MDMA that researchers gave to four octopuses, as part of an experiment on the evolution of social behaviors. Humans and octopuses are separated by 500 million years on the evolutionary tree, yet our brains both respond to the drug — better known as ecstasy — in similar ways. Scientists, who published their findings in Current Biology, called the drug “pro-social,” which is another way of saying that those who take it can get touchy-feely. That’s what happened to the octopuses who took MDMA: They spent more time in a tank with other octopuses rather than venturing off on their own, as the creatures are prone to do when not tripping.
Then again, identifying the proper dose of ecstasy for an octopus may be more art than science. Three other octopuses had to be removed from the experiment after they overdosed on the drug.