Pramiracetam is not a new drug. In fact, it was first invented under the name Pramistar back in the 1970's!
But unlike others in its class of racetam nootropics, Pramiracetam has had a long journey to find its place and purpose in the greater treatment lexicon.
As well, Pramiracetam is just now attracting more interest among the general public for the many cognitive enhancing benefits it has to offer.
In this article, learn more about the history of Pramiracetam, its major uses, dosing suggestions and how it works to boost memory, learning, focus and productivity, among other benefits.
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What Is Pramiracetam?
Pramiracetam is actually the next generation version of piracetam, the original racetam nootropic that was developed for use in the Russian space program.
The most significant difference between piracetam and pramiracetam is the strength.
As this user review video highlights, pramiracetam is significantly stronger than not just piracetam, but potentially all other racetam nootropics.
The reason behind the increased potency is a substitution in the formula. With the substitution of dipropan-2-ylamino ethyl for amides, pramiracetam's potency gets a noticeable boost.
In one study published by the Behavior and Brain Research Journal, laboratory rats required 13 times the dose of piracetam to match the cognitive response to a single dose of pramiracetam.
How Does Pramiracetam Work?
Unless you have a background in chemistry and pharmacology, you may not be fully clear on what is meant by a "racetam nootropic." Below you will see how we define each term:
- Racetam Defined
- Nootropic Defined
- Racetam Nootropic Defined
The term "racetam" denotes a class of drugs that shares a common nucleus made of pyrrolidone. Pyrrolidone is a synthetic organic compound.
While each racetam shares the same nucleic structure, this doesn't mean they all work the same way. For example, both piracetam and pramiracetam share a pyrrolidone-based nucleus. Yet the latter is far stronger than the former.
The easiest translation of the word "nootropic" is smart drug.
The term smart drug indicates a drug has the potential to enhance cognitive function, whether through focus, memory, productivity, motivation, creativity and other cognitive performance markers.
Pramiracetam is a racetam nootropic. This means pramiracetam is a synthetically-derived organic drug that impacts cognitive ability.
Now that you have a basic working knowledge of what a racetam nootropic actually is, let's take a look at the specific way that pramiracetam works to positively impact cognitive ability.
In studies using laboratory rats, researchers learned that application of pramiracetam increased Acetylcholine uptake in the rats' brains up to 37 percent. As well, nitric oxide, another component of learning and memory, was also increased after dosing.
Along with nitric oxide's known memory and learning-enhancement impact, this is significant because acetylcholine is a type of neurotransmitter that is specifically linked to the cognitive functions of memory and learning.
From this, researchers concluded that pramiracetam can help to enhance memory and aid in learning.
Additional research studies showed that pramiracetam can convey protective properties against amnesia and may even be able to help reverse amnesia after brain trauma or injury.
A Russian research study showed that pramiracetam is able to help reduce side effects of brain trauma and concussion.
A number of additional similar research studies showed that memory loss caused by reduced cranial blood flow, brain injury and concussion could potentially be reversed by application of pramiracetam.
Is Pramiracetam Safe to Use?
While pramiracetam is not currently regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and is available without a prescription in the United States, this does not mean you should not treat it as a serious drug in its own right.
Numerous research studies point to the impact all racetam nootropic drugs have on cognitive function - and pramiracetam may well be the most potent drug in this class.
It is important to talk with your health provider if you are under a doctor's care for the management of any serious health condition or are on any medications on an ongoing basis.
You should always start with the lowest dose recommended by your provider or the manufacturer and see how your body responds before increasing the dosage. It is also important to take it earlier in the day to avoid any sleep disruption.
No studies to date have shown that pramiracetam has any significant concerning side effects. The most commonly reported temporary side effects of taking pramiracetam include headache, nausea, throat burning and insomnia.
Taking pramiracetam earlier in the day is the best way to sidestep any issues with sleep disturbance or insomnia. This makes sense since pramiracetam's primary impact is to enhance cognitive performance by stimulating brain activity!
If you are currently pregnant, trying to conceive or lactating, always talk with your doctor before adding anything new to your daily health and wellness routine.
How Should You Use Pramiracetam?
Pramiracetam is available as a powder, tablet or capsule. Many users report that the powder is extremely bitter and the taste can be unpleasant even when added to smoothies. If you are very taste-sensitive, you may prefer the tablet or capsule form.
Of the three, studies show that the powder and the capsule forms have the fastest absorption rates, but ultimately all three deliver the same potency.
Studies with laboratory rats show that the benefits of taking pramiracetam may be enhanced when taken together with choline.
For this reason, it is not uncommon to find pramiracetam combined with a choline supplement in order to boost the overall effect of taking pramiracetam.
The most common starting dose is 1,200 mg divided up into two or three different doses throughout the day. So you may want to do 600 mg in the morning and 600 mg at lunchtime or 400 mg in the morning, 400 mg at lunchtime and 400 mg in mid-afternoon.
In order to avoid any sleep disruption, it is best not to take pramiracetam any later than mid-afternoon.
It is also important to take pramiracetam with food and to include some fat with your meal to enhance absorption and benefits.
What Are the Benefits of Pramiracetam?
Now that you understand more about the history of pramiracetam, how it is designed to work and common dosing patterns, let's take a closer look at the specific benefits of taking pramiracetam.
Improve Short-term and Long-term Memory
Pramiracetam has been shown to improve memory by stimulating activity in the hippocampus, the area in the brain that bears primary responsibility to create, encode and store memories.
In this way, pramiracetam impedes forgetfulness, improves recall and ensures that memories are both made and stored properly.
Unlike with some racetam nootropics that are primarily beneficial for healing after trauma, pramiracetam has shown this ability both in healthy individuals and in patients who are recovering from brain injuries.
Facilitate Recovery from Brain Trauma and Injuries
Brain injury and trauma can produce a number of difficult side effects, including memory loss/amnesia, dizziness, nausea, headaches and disorientation.
In a research study published by the Journal of Brain Injuries, human participants with brain injuries who received treatment with pramiracetam over a six-week period showed marked improvement in all symptoms.
A similar research study published in a Russian research journal showed that memory impairment caused by diminished blood flow to the brain could be at least partially remedied by dosing with pramiracetam.
Increase Mental Focus and Alertness
Neuroplasticity, the ability of the brain to create new neural connections throughout life both normally and after injury, is one of the primary mechanisms behind maintaining proper cognitive function.
Studies involving laboratory animals show that dosing with pramiracetam increase the ability of neurons to both synthesize nitric oxide and increase production of choline, both important in the formation and encoding of new memories.
Reverse the Impact of Dementia
As the human population continues to age and lifespans continue to increase, there is an increased focus on finding effective, immediately impactful treatments for disease of cognitive impairment such as Alzheimer's and dementia.
Because of Pramiracetam's known benefit in reversing amnesia and aiding in memory encoding and storage, this makes pramiracetam a treatment of increasing interest for age-related cognitive decline.
Boost Sensory Perception
"Sensory perception" is a term that encompasses both visual and auditory enhancement.
Pramiracetam has a demonstrated impact on both visual and auditory sensory perception, where users report enhanced color and sound benefits after dosing.
Now that you know more about pramiracetam, how it works, how it is used, dosing guidelines and benefits, it is time to decide how you want to receive these benefits for yourself.
Rather than let yourself get overwhelmed by too much information, it can help to simply focus on choosing a single pramiracetam preparation from a trusted manufacturer. Start with the lowest recommended dosage until you see how your body responds.
Before you know it, you can be on your way to experiencing the cognitive benefits or pramiracetam for healing and peak performance.
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Shannon is a freelance writer and author of three books. Shannon is passionate about crafting knowledge-based, science-supported articles that provide readers with practical, actionable tools to make healthy life choices.