While piracetam is an amazing molecule, its accidental discovery meant that it wasn't invented with a directed focus on cognitive enhancement or neuroprotection. Fortunately, in the intervening decades since piracetam's discovery, research labs around the world set out to make improved versions with additional benefits and they succeeded beyond their expectations. Two of the best versions created were Noopept and Phenylpiracetam.
Noopept is a di-peptide version of piracetam that has very high bioavailability and demonstrated anxiolytic properties. Phenylpiracetam was created by adding a "phenyl" group to piracetam which gives it increased bioavailability and some psychomotor activity.
The circles below show where the piracetam structure is within these new molecules. Taking these advanced forms of piracetam and adding a bio-identical form of the body's preferred ALPHA-GPC in a Liposomal Enclosed Sphere has allowed us to deliver the next generation of nootropics.
Noopept is a di-peptide version of piracetam specifically developed to be more powerful and absorbable from oral administration. The researchers from the lab that created it, specialized in creating peptide versions of other molecules, and created hundreds of modified versions of piracetam before selecting Noopept because it was highly absorbed and "demonstrated a wide spectrum of cognition improving effects." This molecule has been demonstrated to have both positive short-term and long-term effects at enhancing memory and mental processing, especially in older populations.
More powerful than piracetam
In adults with (a) cognitive decline and (b) post-concussional syndrome, Noopept was shown to have an even more powerful and consistent effect compared to piracetam.
Noopept significantly increased the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the brain. BDNF levels control the quantity of new neurons created by the brain
Enhanced Firing of Pyrmadial Neurons
Noopept has been shown to increase the firing rate of pyramidal neurons in the hippocampus. These neurons are implicated in memory formation and recall.
Noopept + CDP-Choline
CDP-Choline, as will be discussed more in depth down below, is the body’s preferred precursor for the memory neurotransmitter acetylcholine.
Supplementation of acetylcholine alone will increase acetylcholine production in the brain. Nootropics alone will increase the body’s use of acetylcholine in the process of forming memory. So when combined, the power of this increased supply to meet the brain’s increased neurochemical demands, has been shown to have “profound effects” compared to either alone
Phenylpiracetam is a version of piracetam with an added phenyl group designed to increase processing speed and provide mental endurance. This added group increases piracetam's affinity for the receptors that control psychomotor activity (where movement and thinking are combined), while not not being a central nervous stimulant.
Phenylpiracetam has been shown to significantly speed up processing and endurance, even in single doses. It was utilized by the Russian space program for use by cosmonauts on extended missions.
Phenylpiracetam was shown to increase the amount of distance covered in exploratory trials. This correlates to an increase in mental activation and endurance.
Normalization Against Aggressions
Phenylpiracetam was shown in this study to regulate the brain waves against aggression in an epilepsy model. Autonomic normalization is a property that helps ensure consistent brain activity against things that would tend to disrupt it.
Prevent Disruption of Memory Formation
Phenylpiracetam has also been shown to prevent a memory blocking agent, scopolamine, from blocking memory formation. This is a powerful indicator of the effect of phenylpiracetam on memory formation.
One way phenylpiracetam works, is by activating and enhancing the activity of the cholinergic system in the brain. The cholinergic system modulates memory and learning and in order for it to operate optimally, it needs the molecule acetylcholine to be at certain levels in synapses. CDP-Choline is the precursor for acetylcholine, and by adding it to the body, the brain will increase its choline levels. By increasing the amount of choline available, the brain will then utilize more of it and in doing so, will enhance the firing mechanisms of this system. This allows phenylpiracetam to have an optimized cholinergic system to interact with.
Towards the Mind
Integrative Activity of the Brain
Giurgea defined integrative activity as: "the body of operations through which the brain accomplishes its most specific function, i.e., enables us to acquire new experiences, to retrieve past ones, and by a constant interaction between them, interfere with our own past and future."
Through our sensory abilities, we create a "phantom-like" image of the real world. And then from complex, "integrating activity" in the telencephalon, we then derive our "capacities [of] perception, conscience, and other features of the inner life of a human being."
While other classifications include molecules that can have an effect on higher mental function, it is usually through an indirect pathway and is typically accompanied by side effects (especially in high doses). No other class includes agents that act directly on higher-level integrative activity or met the other properties and so it became clear that piracetam was the forerunner of an entirely new class.
Based on the evidence of a direct, selective activity of piracetam on the higher integrative mechanisms of the brain, in 1972, Giugea proposed the formation of an entirely new class of agents that would be known as nootropics, meaning "towards the mind."