As the start date for retail cannabis sales in Vermont approaches, a lingering concern is how cannabis can effect brain and motor functions of users.

But a professor at Saint Michael’s College has developed a mobile app that measures the effects of cannabis on a user’s neurocognitive functions.

With a $224,000 National Science Foundation grant in 2020, Ari Kirshenbaum, a psychology professor at the Krikstone Laboratory for the Behavioral Sciences, created Indicator, which can measure things like reaction time, time perception and concentration — all of which are effected by THC, the main psychoactive compound in cannabis.

Kirshenbaum said cannabis can increase the effects of minor distractions, which can have dangerous consequences on the highways or even around the house.

“If you are cooking and something happens, and you are watching the ball game you might be really focused on what is happening on the screen and not in the kitchen,” he said.

Indicator relies on artificial intelligence and advanced data analytics and is designed to be used before and after cannabis consumption. It asks questions about use and then presents a series of brief video or “neuro-games” to measure changes in perception and abilities.