POLICE have launched an investigation into a 'Brainwave' learning course which claims to boost memory, increase intelligence and lift students' grades - but has been criticised as potentially dangerous 'nonsense'. Families who paid more than $150,000 for a five-day group course with Alphalearning Institute instructor Sean Adam, based in Central Plaza, have called for an inquiry. The courses, held in Hong Kong since April, involve sessions with a 'light and sound machine' which plays drumbeats in recipients' ears while flashing lights in their eyes. But former participants told the Sunday Morning Post of extreme reactions to the stimuli and a neurosurgeon warned the lights could trigger epileptic fits even in 'normal' people. 'All this is unscientific and should not be used in therapy. This is all nonsense and may be dangerous,' said neurosurgeon Dr Yu Chung-ping. 'If he was a Hong Kong doctor I would definitely refer this case to the Medical Council.' Course instructor Mr Adam - advertised as a motivational psychologist, undisputed world champion in speed-reading, holder of two current world records in IQ and inventor of the Alphalearning technique - told the Sunday Morning Post last night he was a physicist. Mr Adam, who said he was conducting a course yesterday, refused to elaborate on his qualifications or discuss the concerns. In an interview with the Sunday Morning Post Magazine in April, he claimed his system could cure epilepsy and help dyslexia. Police last night said they had contacted Mr Adam after receiving a statement from Central businesswoman Gayl Coleridge. Mrs Coleridge said she had paid $154,000 for her family to attend the course and buy the Brainwave 1 system: a laptop computer, earphones, eye flaps and floppy disk last month. 'We have a daughter who had some learning difficulties, so we thought it sounded worthwhile,' she said. 'On the first session which we did using the Lotus program, my husband experienced a large reaction to the light and sound stimulation - he went very white, broke into a profuse sweat, fainted and felt pains in his chest. 'Another experience happened to a small boy aged 13 who suffered from dyslexia - in his case he appeared to go unconscious and his body jerked convulsively for about 20 minutes before he came round.' Mr Adam's wife, Jeana, who co-presents the Alphalearning courses, said the Brainwave 1 system had healed many with 'sickness in their brains' by balancing the two hemispheres of the brain. Consumer Council spokesman Kenneth So said officers were looking into the Alphalearning Institute. Hong Kong resident Ali Al Wahabi, said he had paid more than $14,000 for his daughter, who was having learning difficulties, and wife to attend the Wan Chai course. 'I think we were overcharged for a course that was an insult to human intelligence,' he said.