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Oxiracetam is a racetam nootropic and smart drug used to promote cognitive function. Research shows positive effects for attention span, memory, and mental energy.
Oxiracetam has similar effects to other members of the racetam family, but is 3-5 times more potent than Piracetam, from which it is derived.
It has a long biological half-life of up to 8 hours with a similar onset of effects between 30 - 90 minutes. This nootropic demonstrates a higher rate of oral bioavailability than Piracetam.
This nootropic is described as having a slight stimulatory effect and has been shown to increase the activity of excitatory neurotransmitters. Unlike Aniracetam, it does not have a strong effect on mood, anxiety or depression.
Oxiracetam facilitates several processes related to long-term memory formation by modulating AMPA receptors and increasing levels of glutamate, glycine, acetylcholine, and D-aspartic acid.
Studies have shown that it can improve patterns of behavior in patients with multi-infarct dementia and other forms of cerebrovascular disease and age-related cognitive decline. Patients reported improved ability to speak, greater social activity, increased alertness and mental functionality.
In user reviews, it is described as enhancing productivty, helping users focus intensely for long periods of time, reducing distraction, increasing motivation and task saliency (desire to complete work).
|ALSO KNOWN AS||2-(4-hydroxy-2-oxopyrrolidin-1-yl)acetamide, 4-Hydroxy-2-oxopyrrolidine-N-acetamide, 4-hydroxy-2-oxo-pyrrolidinoacetamide, ISF 2522, Oxiracetamum, 4-hydroxypiracetam|
|TRADE NAMES||Neuromet, Bei Qing Xing, Jiang Lang Xing, Neuracetam, Neuromed, Neuropia, Ou Lai Ning, Ou Lan Tong/td>|
|CATEGORY||Nootropic, Racetam, Ampakine|
|TYPE||Nootropic Agent, Central Stimulant, Cognitive Enhancer, Psychotropic Drugs|
|MECHANISM OF ACTION|
|DOSAGE||400 mg to 2400 mg per day, split into 1 - 2 administrations|
|STACKED WITH||Piracetam, Pramiracetam, Aniracetam, Phenylpiracetam, Noopept, Choline, Alpha GPC, Citicoline, Centrophenoxine, DMAE, Phosphatidylcholine, Adderall, (Provigil), Phenibut|
|ATC CODE||N06BX07 (WHO): N06 Psychoanaleptics > NO6B Psychostimulants, agents used for adhd and nootropics > NO6BX Other psychostimulants and nootropics|
|CAS REGISTRY NUMBER||62613-82-5|
|MOLECULAR WEIGHT||158.157 g/mol|
|ABSOPRTION||Absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract over 1-3 hours|
|BIOLOGICAL HALF-LIFE||6 - 8 hours|
|ONSET OF EFFECTS||30 - 90 minutes|
Oxiracetam Nootropic Overview
Oxiracetam (4-hydroxy-2-oxo-pyrrolidinoacetamide) is a synthetic racetam nootropic that was derived from Piracetam and is purported to be significantly more potent.
Oxiracetam may also be known by the names ISF 2522, Oxiracetamum, 4-hydroxypiracetam, Neuromet, Bei Qing Xing, Jiang Lang Xing, Neuracetam, Neuromed, Neuropia, Ou Lai Ning and Ou Lan Tong.
It was first developed by the Italian pharmaceutical company ICF in the 1970s and was introduced to the Italian market in 1988. It has been used clinically in Italy and some Asian countries including Malaysia, South Korea, Japan and China.
This nootropic has not been approved by the FDA in the United States for the treatment of any medical conditions. It has not been widely used as a medical therapy, but has been well studied for human use.
All racetam nootropics contain a 2-pyrrolidinone base in their chemical structure. Oxiracetam is distinct from Piracetam because it has a hydroxyl group on the 4th carbon of its pyrrolidinone structure.
This modification is purported to increase the oral bioavailability of the drug and result in some differences in its mechanism of action.
Oxiracetam and Piracetam have the two most similar chemical structures of all of the racetam nootropics. Their effects are also largely similar.
This chiral drug exists as both (S)- and (R)- oxiracetam. It is the (S)-oxiracetam form that has been idenfitied as the active ingredient. However, it is not currently marketed in its enatiopure form and can only be bought as a racemic mixture. 
Oxiracetam works similarly to most of the other Racetam family members. This means that it influences both the glutamateric and cholinergic systems of the brain.
It appears to facilitate already occurring neurotransmission and modulates AMPA receptors. It has also been shown to increase acetylcholine release in the cerebral cortex and hippocampus as well as increasing acetylcholine utilization.
Research shows that it can promote memory and learning by enhancing long-term potentiation in regions of the brain involved in memory formation. It also exhibits neuroprotective properties and can counteract the effects of some neurotoxins.
In comparison to Aniracetam, Oxiracetam does not appear to modify concentrations of dopamine or serotonin in the brain. This nootropic does not have a strong mood enhancing or anxiolytic effects based on user reviews.
It does produce a positive effect on arousal, logical thinking, spatial reasoning, attention, concentration, and mental performance. It has not been research in healthy adult humans and most of the findings so far are reported in individuals with some form of cognitive impairment or memory loss.
In clinical trials, it appears that it can take several weeks to months for the benefits to fully develop. Single-day treatment protocols have not resulted in significant differences. Chronic use can promote long-term memory function, even in tests following the discontinuation of this smart drug.
Oxiracetam is also reported to be safe and well-tolerated when used under medical supervision. According to researchers in the Department of Neurology at the University of Milan, "In single and repeated oral dosages up to 2,400 mg, oxiracetam is a safe compound.
Oxiracetam has been shown improve symptoms of cognitive dysfunction in the treatment of dementia and other forms of mental impairment.
This racetam nootropic has not been studied as a cognitive enhancer in healthy, young adults. All of the evidence we have of its purported nootropic benefits in this population comes from anecdotal user reviews.
It has been studied in healthy experimental animals and has improved learning and memory. This suggests it may be able to promote brain function in normal humans.
However, animal studies cannot be used to draw conclusions about the efficacy of Oxiracetam in humans. They can only be used as preliminary findings to indicate future potentially promising areas of research.
As a nootropic supplement, this racetam is commonly taken by individuals who want to increase their ability to focus, perform well academically or be more productive at work.
Below are some of the benefits described in user reviews and from clinical studies. Your results may vary and not everyone responds to this nootropic in the same way.
Oxiracetam is often described as the best nootropic for enhancing logical reasoning and analytical thinking ability.
Experiences with Oxiracetam powder or capsules describe increased ablity to remember facts and a zoned-in or tunnel vision sensation of deep concentration and flow. Some have said it helps with mentally taxing work and enabled them to be more mindful, in the moment and less distracted.
Some say that it helps increase their verbal fluency and their social drive. Users have reported that this nootropic supplements helps them feel like their brain is "turned on" and more connected.
It lacks the mood-boosting and anti-anxiety effects of Aniracetam, but does appear to minimize negative thought patterns and repetitive thinking. Users say that it helps them to ignore emotional feelings and instead to focus on the work at hand.
Some users describe this nootropic as boosting physical energy in addition to mental wakefulness. It is sometimes used before working out or exercising and may promote faster, sharper reflexes in athletic competition.
Not everyone who takes Oxiracetam experiences positive nootropic effects. Some report increased fatigue, brain fog, irritability, anxiety or a lack of focus. Adjusting the dosage or using a choline supplement may improve results in people who do not initially respond to this nootropic agent.
Uncharacteristic responses reported by some users include increased confusion, feeling "out of it", feeling "giggly", a manic sensation and reduced sociability.
A small percentage of users say that it has a mood-lifting effect, while some others say it can cause them to feel depressed, irritable, agitated and unmotivated.
There are a wide range of different experiences reported in user testimonials. Read more user reviews of Oxiracetam here to see some of the common positive and negative reactions.
There has been limited medical use of Oxiracetam compared to other nootropic drugs. It has not been widely prescribed for therapeutic use.
Over 50 different human clinical trials have been conducted to determine the effects of this cognitive enhancer. Many studies have been conducted in Italy where it was first developed and marketed.
Some research suggests that it has the potential to improve cognitive function in individuals with impairments due to aging, multi-infarct dementia and Alzheimer's disease.
It has also been studied in models of traumatic brain injury and in patients with organic brain syndrome due to prolonged exposure to organic solvents. It is of interest for its potential use in epilepsy, stroke recovery, post-concussion syndrome, motor dysfunction and other neurological problems.
Some websites report that this nootropic has been studied in ADHD patients. There do not appear to be any clinical trials involving treatment of ADHD published on PubMed.
Unlike Aniracetam, it has not been used in the treatment of anxiety or depression. However, results of clinical studies suggest that it may have benefits for promoting subjective well-being, quality of life and mood stability in patients with Senile Dementia.
Oxiracetam has been shown to potentiate the effects of methamphetamine on a test of learning and memory in mice. A 50 mg/kg dose given to C57BL/6 strain mice in combination with methamphetamine produced improved performance on a shuttle-box avoidance acquisition task. 
25 or 50 mg/kg doses of Oxiracetam were also shown to improve avoidance acquisition when administered to mice independently, but less than the combined treatment. This result was only seen in mice trained on the task following five days of pre-treatment with Oxiracetam, suggesting the need for a loading period to maximize effectiveness. 
subjects. Participants were given 800 mg of this drug twice per day or a placebo.
Those who received treatment with Oxiracetam experienced improved performance on the Mini Mental State Examination, Auditory Continuous Performance Test, Rey's 15 Words Test, Block Tapping Test, Mattis Word Fluency, Luria Alternating Series and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living.
29 of the patients given Oxiracetam continued to receive this drug for 1 year as part of an open follow-up study. They received the same dosage of 800 mg twice per day.
After 90 days, there were further statistical improvements compared to baseline on all of the same tests as weein in the initial study, except for Rey's 15 Words Test. There was a statistical worsening in the late phase of the study on non-memory tests and the Digit Span Backwards and Gibson's Spiral tests.
The researchers noted that no serious adverse events were recorded during the study and there were no significant changes in routine laboratory tests.
In another study on 24 patients with probable Alzheimer's disease, treatment with Oxiracetam for one month did not produce improvements in any of a broad battery of neuropsychological tests.
More research is needed to evaluate the efficacy of this nootropic for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease.
In a small clinical trial involving patients diagnosed with dementias of vascular origin, dosages of up to 1,200 mg per day of Oxiracetam were studied.
In the first four weks, patients in the treatment group were given 400 mg daily of Oxiracetam, followed by 800 mg in weeks 5-8 and 1,200 mg in weeks 9-12.
Study participants were given a pychometric test battery at the beginning and conclusion of the study. Cognitive function was not improved in these patients, but there was improvement in quality of life and patient symptoms.
Benefits reported included less difficulty speaking, less forgetfulness, improved sleep, reduced confusion and disorientation, inreased alertness and interaction with others, improved mood, reduced anxiety and greater independence.
One patient saw an increase in depression, agitation, inattentiveness, and decline in orientation ability.
This is a very small study and several of the participants had to drop out either due to other medical problems or therapy refusals. The researchers concluded there could be a therapeutic benefit to the drug, but that further study is required. 
A multicentre, double-blind, placebo-controlled study examined the effects of this nootropic in 65 patients with primary degenerative, multi-infarct or mixed dementia.
Patients were given an 800mg oral Oxiracetam tablet twice a day or a placebo for 12 weeks. Those taking Oxiracetam experienced a statistically significant improvement on a quality of life scale.
There were also improvements in some neuropsychological tests, including a controlled associations task and a short story recall test. 
In a study of cognitive impairment secondary to primary degenerative dementia, 1600 mg/day of Oxiracetam was assessed compared to a placebo in 96 patients. The year-long study was divided into a 26-week double blind period followed by a 26-week open study period.
Study subjects who were treated with this nootropic drug showed improvements in simple reaction time as well as in cognitive function. In comparison, those on a placebo experienced significant worsening in global and cognitive function related to their baseline neuropsychological test scores.
Patients expressed a preference for Oxiracetam and the drug was well tolerated by study participants. The researchers concluded that, "Oxiracetam favorably acts on the symptoms of senile cerebral deterioration and can improve the capability of information processing, as suggested by the better performances obtained at the reaction time test and at the Attentional Matrix test." 
A study from the 1980's looked at the effects of Oxiracetam on the treatment of clinical symptoms in patients with Organic Brain Syndrome (OBS).
OBS is now known as general neurocognitive disorder. It refers to cognitive dysfunction of an organic nature such as a medical disease or another known physiological cause.
This controlled study was conducted on 43 patients with mild to moderate cognitive impairment due to OBS. Patients received either a placebo or a twice daily dose of 800mg oral Oxiracetam for eight weeks.
Those patients taking Oxiracetam experienced improved cognitive function, logical performance, attention, functionality and behavioral symptoms. 
Oxiracetam has been described in clinical studies as promoting arousal, alertness and mental energy levels. Users say that it has a modest stimulant effect and can increase stamina for completing tasks which may otherwise be mentally draining.
Oxiracetam is believed to have global effects on neurophysiological performance by increasing arousal and facilitating greater attention.
In one study, the effects of different dosages of Oxiracetam were measured in Male Wistar rats on a radial maze memory task. Dosages of 25, 50 and 100 mg/kg of bodyweight were administered orally and EEG scores were recorded.
The results showed that those rats given Oxiracetam had better working memory performance compared to the control group. Rats given Oxiracetam also stayed awake for longer periods of time and saw an increase in the latency of Slow Wave Sleep (SWS).
According to the researchers, "oxiracetam facilitated the persistence of awake state in a familiar environment." This effect was statistically significant in the groups given the higher dosages and showed a trend (but not statistical significance) at the lower dosage.
The researchers proposed that this increase in arousal was likely due to the cholinergic effects of this nootropic. Stimulation of cholinergic receptors in the brain stem and basal telencephalon can promote thalamo-cortical arousal. 
Other models of arousal have not yielded positive results. Measuring the locomotion or movement of rats is considered to be a reliable way to guage increases in arousal and psychostimulatory effects of drugs.
Rats given stimulants like amphetamine agents tend to have increased locomotion in tests of general activity. Oxiracetam did not increase locomotion at dosages of either 25 or 50mg/kg and did not affect the locomotor stimulation of methamphetamine when given in combination.
In research studied on patients with cognitive decline, some report improved sleep following daily use of Oxiracetam.
This is counterintuitive given its purported stimulatory effects and long half-life. However, facilitation of acetylcholine neurotransmission can improve the brain's stimulus barrier, which helps us stay asleep despite noise and other potential interruptions.
EEG (Electroencephalography) data from mice given either 25, 50 or 100 mg/kg of oral Oxiracetam was examined to determine the effects on arousal and sleep patterns.
The data showed that this nootropic did not impair sleep quality, but did delay the onset of slow wave sleep (SWS). Thus, use of Oxiracetam may increase sleep latency. 
It is recommended to avoid taking this nootropic too close to bedtime as it could worsen insomnia or make it difficult to fall asleep. It also seems to increase the vividness of dreams and is reported to cause disturbing nightmares in some users.
Oxiracetam is believed to work by enhancing certain types of signalling between neurons in the brain. While the exact mechanism of action has not yet been established, research shows that it works in a number of different ways.
Like other racetams, it appears to influence cholinergic receptors and increase the utilization of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. This neurotransmitter is linked to memory consolidation, working memory (short-term memory), REM sleep, attentional control and ability to concentrate.
Oxiracetam is also an Ampakine and increases activity at AMPA receptors in the brain. This subtype of glutamate receptors mediates fast synaptic transmissions and plays a role in long-term potentiation, synaptic plasticity and learning capacity. This nootropic is also believed to increase NMDA receptor activity.
Unlike other racetam nootropics, it does not appear to affect Nicotinic Acetylcholine receptors, Noradrenaline release, the Serotonergic system or the Dopaminergic system. In comparison to Aniracetam, it does not function as an anxiolytic and does not promote euphoric feelings or a mood lifting effect.
Animal research shows that Oxiracetam is neuroprotective and can inhibit some forms of neuronal damage. It also increases bloodflow to the brain and enhances enegry metabolism in brain cells.
In viv and in vitro research shows that this nootropic increases phospholipid synthesis in the membranes of rat brain microsomes. It has also been shown in laboratory studies to increase the rate of protein synthesis in rat brain slices. 
Oxiracetam apears to be cholinomimetic, meaning that it increases activity of the cholinergic system in the brain.
Acetylcholine is an excitatory neurotransmitter involved in general cognition, memory encoding, sensory perceptions, concentration, the reward system, the stimulus barrier and sustaining rapid eye movement sleep.
The septohippocampal acetylcholine pathway is believed to be involved in learning new information, memory recall and encoding.
In the cerebral cortex, cholinergic neurons (those brain cells that either release or respond to acetylcholine) are implicated in behavior control, executive function, attention switching, sensory processing and memory consolidation.
Research shows that 100mg and 300mg/kg oral dosages of Oxiracetam given to rats results in increased utilization of acetylcholine, but did not increase steady-state concentration levels of this neurotransmitter.
Other trials conducted by the same research team showed that this nootropic compound could increase high-affinity choline uptake (HACU) in hippocampal cells by between 40 - 31%.
Hemicholinium (HC-3) is an anti-cholinergic agent that inhibits the synthesis of acetylcholine. It has been shown to impair learning in rats as measured by active-avoidance conditioned response in a pole climbing test.
Administration of 100 mg/kg i.p. of Oxiracetam following an 15 micrograms intracerebroventricular injection of HC-3 resulted in significant improvement of memory impairment. 
This suggests that Oxiracetam may work either by stimulating the synthesis of acetylchoine or by amplifying the response to acetylcholine at neural receptors. 
In addition to its effects on cholinergic pathways, this nootropic also appears to influence glutamatergic pathways involved in Long-Term Potentiation (LTP).
In an in vitro study, the effects of Oxiracetam were observed in rat hippocampal slices from the CA1 region. Superfusing oxiracetam at between 0.1-100 microM resulted in increased excitatory postsynaptic potential and facilitated LTP. 
In another in vitro study, researchers found that Oxiracetam increased the release of glutamate in rat hippocampal slices. It was not clear what the specific mechanism that mediated this increase was. 
S-Oxiracetam has been shown to protect against the damaging effects of ischemic stroke in rats by promoting propert functioning of the blood-brain barrier (BBB).
This is the semipermeable membrane that separates your brain cells from circulating blood. It is highly selective, only allowing certain types of molecules to pass through the barrier and into the extracellular fluid that surrounds neurons.
The blood-brain barrier plays an important role in protecting brain systems from potential toxins and in maintaining a homeostatic environment for brain tissue.
BBB dysfunction can increase the risk of brain edema and the inflammatory response following an ischemic stroke, leading to greater damage.
Researchers showed that administering S-Oxiracetam one hour after mimicking a stroke in rats resulted in reduced cerebral infarct size, a decrease in the release of inflammatory cytokines and reduced cerebral edema (brain swelling).
The findings demonstrated that S-Oxiracetam prevented BBB dysfunction by regulating tight junction proteins, which help to maintain the structural integrity of this barrier.
This nootropic drug also upregulated the function of P-Glycoprotein, which works as a transporter or "gatekeeper" protein in the BBB. 
Oxiracetam is believed to increase energy metabolism in brain cells, in part by increasing cerebral blood flow and uptake of glucose and oxygen.
It has also been proposed to affect the content of high-energy phosphates including adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and phosphocreatine (PCr) in cells.
ATP is the primary energy currency made by the mitochondria of our cells. This molecule stores energy that is used by our cells to perform any number of cellular functions.
In one in vitro study, both Piracetam and Oxiracetam were added into cell culture mediums for two weeks up to a final concentration of 10(-7) M. Oxiracetam was found to increase the ATP content in cultured astrocytes. 
By increasing ATP concentrations, Oxiracetam may enhance the availability of energy in our brain cells, which could enhance cognitive function.
Other studies have shown that (S)-oxiracetam regulates ATP metabolism in the cerebral cortex of hypoperfused rats. 
This nootropic does not appear to stimulate the release of dopamine or serotonin, which makes it distinct from its cousin Aniracetam. These are two neurotransmitters involved in the regulation of mood and positive feelings.
While some users do say that it helps to lift their mood, these reports are less frequent compared to Aniracetam users. Most people also do not describe euphoric moods or an anxiolytic response from this nootropic, which is distinct from Aniracetam.
Administering 50 mg/kg of Oxiracetam to rats before administering the dopamine-antagonist haloperidol can block the negative effects that this drug has on learning.
This promnesiac effect of Oxiracetam is also blocked by low levels of the catecholamine neurotransmitter noradrenaline (norepinephrine). This brain chemical is involved in vigilance, wakefulness, mood, memory and flocus.
In vitro studies have found that Oxiracetam does not directly effect the release of noradrenaline. It also does not appear to increase NMDA-induced release of this excitatory neurotransmitter.
However, it has been shown to block the inhibition of noradrenaline release caused by NMDA receptor antagonists. It does this by reducing the antagonistic effects on glutamate receptors.
Oxiracetam is a cyclic derivative of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), which is the chief inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain.
However, it does not exhibit binding affinity for GABA receptors in the brain. This is similar to other racetam nootropics.
In one in vitro study, the effects of 0.01-1 microM Oxiracetam were observed on the 3H] gamma-aminobutyric acid ([3H]GABA) receptor in superfused rat hippocampal slices. It did not affect these receptors or the release of GABA from the hippocampus cells. 
Two of the metabolites of Oxiracetam are N-aminoacetyl-GABOB and GABOB (beta-hydroxy-GABA). GABOB is considered to be a GABA analogue and is used as an anticonvulsant drug (Gamibetal) for the treatment of epilepsy.
It is probably that Oxiracetam may influence GABA receptors through the actions of its metabolites, but this would not be demonstrable in in vitro studies where it is applied directly to cells without being metabolized.
Furthermore, Oxiracetam is not significantly metabolized in the body. Within 48 hours after taking a dosage, 90% of the intact drug is detected in urine.
In user reviews, Oxiracetam is typically described as more potent than Piracetam and as producing more stimulating effects.
A double-blind controlled trial compared the effects of oxiracetam to piracetam, the prototypical racetam compound from which it is derived.
In this study, patients with organic brain syndrome were given a starting dosage of 400 mg of either Oxiracetam or Piracetam per day. Over the six-week treatment period, the dosage was increased by 400 mg intervals every week until a final dose of 2,400 mg per day was achieved.
This graduated dosage schedule was designed to improve the tolerability of the drug and minimize the risk of side effects.
60 elderly patients were enrolled in the trial and underwent both subjective and objective testing of thier psychological symptoms and memory function.
At the end of the trial, Oxiracetam was found to be more effective at improving memory scores while Piracetam resulted in improved psychological scores (reduced paranoid thoughts and agitation).
The study authors wrote that both of the drugs had good tolerability and minimal side effects.
Idebenone (Catena, Raxone, Sovrima) is a nootropic drug used to treat Alzheimer's disease and aging. It is a synthetic form of CoQ10 and exhibits antioxidant effects as well as promoting mitochondrial energy generation.
In one randomized controlled trial, the effects of Oxiracetam were compared to those of Idebenone for the treatment of cognitive decline in elderly persons.
This study involved 79 patients who were given either 800 mg of Oxiracetam twice a day of 45 mg of Idebenone twice daily.
The study found that Idebenone was more effective for increasing performance in the SCAG psychometric test as well as the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT) and the Gottfries Rating Scale.
According to the researchers, both treatment were well-tolerated and there were no patients who left the study due to adverse effects.