Free Nootropics: Indications And Effectiveness Essay Example
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Nootropics: Indications and Effectiveness
Nootropics are referred to as neuroenhancers, intelligence enhancers, smart drugs, and cognitive enhancers (Lanni et al., 2008). Improving mental function, they are functional foods, drugs, supplements, and nutraceuticals. Nootropics were named by a chemist in Romania named Comeliu Giurgea who synthesized the first drug of this type, piracetam, in 1964. Racetams are a group of synthetic nootropic compounds that are based on piracetam (Examine.com, 2015).
Joe Blow is a 42 year old male with a history of childhood attention deficit disorder and schizophrenia. After long-term drug therapies, Joe’s mother has asked her physician to include nootropic drugs in his medication regimen; she has read about the cognitive enhancement qualities on the internet. Joe’s doctor is looking into the possibilities for Joe from current research.
Treatment of Cognitive Disorders
Froestl, Pfeifer and Muhs (2013) conducted research to investigate cognitive enhancement drugs called cootropics for patients diagnosed with stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, aging, attention deficit disorder, and schizophrenia. The components of cognition are memory, language, information processing, executive functions, knowledge application, psychomotor functions, attention, and changing preferences.
Aniracetam is a racetam that acts on receptors that influence learning and the formation of memory (Peak Nootropics, 2015). It is used in the treatment of elderly patients to relieve symptoms of degenerative cognitive disorders. Slightly higher in potency than Piracetam, the benefits are dependent on the user.
Co-Dergocrine Mesylate improves cognitive function in elderly volunteers (Wadworth and Chrisp, 1992). It compensates for inadequate functioning of dopaminergic, serotoninergic, and adrenergic systems. Overlap in studies have resulted in non-classification of the drug for use, although it has been incorporated into pharmaceutical regimens for years.
Coluracetam is a synthetic racetam drug that is believed to enhance cognitive function, although there is not substantiating evidence for this (Bessho et al., 1996).
Deprenyl promotes memory and cognition in patients who suffer from Alzheimer’s Disease. Parkinson’s Disease patients also note the progression slows of their symptoms. Research in the early stages finds Deprenyl delays the time when standard drugs for these degenerative diseases must be started (Nootriment - Supplement Reviews and Healthy Ideas, 2014). IDRA-21 is being researched for use in promoting cognitive functions; findings to date demonstrate the potency to be 10 to 30 times more than aniracetam (Buccafusco et al., 2004). Patients diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease also benefit from IDA-21’s effectiveness against depression, schizophrenia, and cognitive defects produced by Alprazolam (Nootropic Supplements, 2014). Arai et al. (1996) stated that effects lasting up to 48 hours after IDRA-21 is administrated may be a result of the ability of the drug to encourage potentiation between brain synapses.
Lecithin aids in memory and learning ability, including Alzheimer’s patients (Essortment, 2015). It occurs naturally in foods, but the current diet of the average person does not contain adequate amounts of lecithin to perform normal body functions.
Mecobalamin promote regeneration of nerve damage and assists in maintaining nerve function that typically decays in the normal course of aging (Nootriment - Supplement Reviews and Healthy Ideas, 2014).
Piracetam is a racetam compound is used to assist with dementia with older patients as it can promote cognitive function and memory, particularly when administered with a vasodilator (Advancenootropics.com, 2015). Reviews of Sunifiram suggest the effects are similar to piracetam, but is more than 1000 times more potent (Nootriment - Supplement Reviews and Healthy Ideas, 2014).
Selegeline is felt to be similar in structure and effect to l-Deprenyl for treatment of Alzheimer’s by elevating dopamine production (Drugs.com, 2015). Foods containing Tyramine have been known to cause hypertensive reactions, so close observation and possible dietary restrictions may be indicated.
Symptoms of Brain and Spinal Cord Injury
Piracetam has been shown to suppress ischemia and convulsions secondary to brain and spinal cord trauma.
Nefiracetam administered to animals with brain damage from insults such as ischemia and anoxia demonstrated improvement in brain function (Brainenhancingsupplements.com, 2015).
Sulbutiamine has come under scrutiny for use in mental fatigue and neurotic anxiety (Examine.com, 2015). Individuals report tolerance builds quickly, usually the effects of energy and elatedness. Therefore, sulbutiamine should be taken as needed rather than as a daily supplement.
Aniracetam is approved for attention disorders and general memory problems secondary to increasing dopamine levels (Peak Nootropics, 2015). However, it is not to be considered the primary therapy for medical conditions; benefits are possible when combined with other treatment.
Coluracetam has been seen to assist in learning deficit treatment (Bessho et al., 1996).
Deprenyl increases dopamine levels which are involved with control of inhibitions, concentrations, and attention; for this reason, it has been used in treatment for Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (Nootriment - Supplement Reviews and Healthy Ideas, 2014).
Piracetam has also been found to increase dopamine levels and may be appropriate for the treatment of attention disorders.
Anxiety and Depression
Deprenyl assists dopamine activity in the brain, resulting in effects to combat depression and anxiety; it promotes motivation and the excitement for life (Nootriment - Supplement Reviews and Healthy Ideas, 2014).
NSI-189 was given approval by the Food and Drug Administration to advance to Phase 1b testing for treatment of depression. Implications are that other applications could be in the area of spinal cord injuries and stroke.
Clinical trials of nefiracetam indicate an antidepressive effect in a 12 week trial (Neuralstem, Inc., 2011).
Other Medical Uses
Lecithin aids in the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disorders by producing a neural sheath (Essortment, 2015). It occurs naturally in foods, but the current diet of the average person does not contain adequate amounts of lecithin to perform normal body functions.
Piracetam has been shown to be effective for treating cerebrovascular disorders and the neuroprotective agencies are helpful during coronary bypass surgery (Advancenootropics.com, 2015).
There is extensive interest by students in nootropics for enhancing short-term memory. PRL-8-53 is now available in over the internet with a single study performed in 1978 (Hansl and Mead, 1978). It found a statistically significant degree of retention of verbal information after administration. Nefiracetam has reported effects of improved recall and improved concentration (Brainenhancingsupplements.com, 2015). Sunifiram is one of the newest nootropics on the market and user experiences indicate it may become one of the most popular study aids in terms of boosting memory function, alertness, learning, and attention span (Nootriment - Supplement Reviews and Healthy Ideas, 2014).
Other nootropic drugs include pramiracetam, oxiracetam, modafinil, unifiram, noopept, fasoracetam, amfonelic acid, and 5HTP (Tryptophan).
It should be stressed that nootropic drugs have not been accepted for general use; they are still in the experimental stages of research. There are a number of other nootropic drugs on the market and research continues into their indications and effectiveness. Many still require a prescription to acquire, and it is recommended to consult with a physician prior to combining them with other medications.
Advancenootropics.com, (2015). Piracetam (Nootropil) | Nootropics | Memory Supplements.
[online] Available at: http://advancenootropics.com/shop/piracetam/ [Accessed 17 Mar.
Arai, A., Guidotti, A., Costa, E. and Lynch, G. (1996). Effect of the AMPA receptor modulator
IDRA 21 on LTP in hippocampal slices. NeuroReport, 7(13), pp.2211-2215.
Bessho, T., Takashina, K., Tabata, R., Ohshima, C., Chaki, H., Yamabe, H., Egawa, M., Tobe,
and Saito, K. (1996). Effect of the novel high affinity choline uptake enhancer 2-(2-
yl)acetoamide on deficits of water maze learning in rats. Arzneimittelforschung., 46(4),
Brainenhancingsupplements.com, (2015). Nefiracetam Nootropic Compound Research - Side
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Buccafusco, J., Weiser, T., Winter, K., Klinder, K. and Terry, A. (2004). The effects of IDRA
21, a positive modulator of the AMPA receptor, on delayed matching performance by
young and aged rhesus monkeys. Neuropharmacology, 46(1), pp.10-22.
Drugs.com, (2015). Selegiline - FDA prescribing information, side effects and uses. [online]
Available at: http://www.drugs.com/pro/selegiline.html [Accessed 17 Mar. 2015].
Essortment, (2015). The Benefits And Risks Of Lecithin. [online] Available at:
http://www.essortment.com/benefits-risks-lecithin-48939.html [Accessed 17 Mar. 2015].
Examine.com, (2015). Racetam - Scientific Review on Usage, Dosage, Side Effects |
Examine.com. [online] Available at: http://examine.com/supplements/Racetam/
[Accessed 17 Mar. 2015].
Examine.com, (2015). Sulbutiamine - Scientific Review on Usage, Dosage, Side Effects |
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[Accessed 17 Mar. 2015].
Froestl, W., Pfeifer, A. and Muhs, A. (2013). Cognitive enhancers (nootropics). Part 3: drugs
interacting with targets other than receptors or enzymes. disease-modifying drugs.
Hansl, N. and Mead, B. (1978). PRL-8-53: Enhanced learning and subsequent retention in
humans as a result of low oral doses of new psychotropic agent. Psychopharmacology,
Lanni, C., Lenzken, S., Pascale, A., Del Vecchio, I., Racchi, M., Pistoia, F. and Govoni, S.
(2008). Cognition enhancers between treating and doping the mind. Pharmacological
Research, 57(3), pp.196-213.
Neuralstem, Inc., (2011). Neuralstem's NSI-189 Trial in Major Depressive Disorder Receives
FDA Approval to Advance to Phase Ib [online] Available at:
Depressive-Disorder-Receives-FDA-Approval-to-Advance-to-Phase-Ib [Accessed 17
Nootriment - Supplement Reviews and Healthy Ideas, (2014). Deprenyl: A Mood Boosting and
Anti-Aging Nootropic Drug. [online] Available at: http://nootriment.com/deprenyl/
[Accessed 17 Mar. 2015].
Nootriment - Supplement Reviews and Healthy Ideas, (2014). Methylcobalamin (Methyl-B12)
Benefits, Uses, Side Effects and Dosage. [online] Available at:
http://nootriment.com/methylcobalamin/ [Accessed 17 Mar. 2015].
Nootriment - Supplement Reviews and Healthy Ideas, (2014). Sunifiram Review: What are the
Effects of this Nootropic?. [online] Available at: http://nootriment.com/sunifiram-review/
[Accessed 18 Mar. 2015].
Nootropic Supplement & Smart Drug Reviews, (2014). Neurological Effects of IDRA-21 –
Effects of IDRA-21 – [Accessed 17 Mar. 2015].
Peak Nootropics, (2015). Aniracetam - Peak Nootropics. [online] Available at:
http://peaknootropics.com/shop/aniracetam/ [Accessed 17 Mar. 2015].
Trialx.com, (2015). Sulbutiamine (Arcalion) Side Effects, Dosage, Interaction Information.
[online] Available at: http://trialx.com/treatment/sulbutiamine-arcalion-indications-side-
effects-dosage-interactions-information/ [Accessed 17 Mar. 2015].
Wadworth, A. and Chrisp, P. (1992). Co-Dergocrine Mesylate. Drugs & Aging, 2(3), pp.153-
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