DMAE Benefits – Get more with Centrophenoxine

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DMAE Background

Dimethylaminoethanol – or DMAE for short – is naturally-occurring compound found throughout the brain, and acts primarily as a metabolic precursor to the choline family of neurotransmitters. Cholinergic neurotransmitters play a crucial role in a wide variety of cognitive processes, including learning, memory, and general alertness. DMAE is also believed to play a major role in a variety of metabolic processes throughout the brain, including the repair and maintenance of cellular DNA through a process called methyl donation.

DMAE is normally acquired from one’s diet, and is particularly common in fish such as salmon, anchovies, and sardines. However, dietary sources can be insufficient for many individuals, and it has been estimated that a significant portion of the general population may be choline-deficient.

Choline is an essential nutrient for humans: because of this, chronic choline deficiency can result in a variety of adverse effects, including liver disease. Choline shortage may also act as a risk factor for the development of Alzheimer’s disease.

Because DMAE supplementation increases the body’s stores of cholinergic neurotransmitters, it has long been the subject of clinical research as a potential treatment for a variety of neurodegenerative disorders involving memory impairments. Many of these early studies found success in treating the symptoms of these diseases with straightforward dietary supplementation with DMAE, and it subsequently became widely used by clinicians for this purpose.

In Europe and Japan, DMAE has been classified as a prescription drug for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, where it is known under the market name Deanol. Outside of Europe it is freely available as a nutritional supplement.

Due to DMAE’s effects on improving cholinergic synthesis and neural transmission, it quickly became widely used as a nootropic compound by otherwise healthy users, primarily as a memory-booster.

As scientific and clinical evidence steadily accumulated, however, a number of important limitations of DMAE became increasingly evident. While a full review of DMAE’s scientific history is beyond the present scope, one of its principal pharmacological limitations stems from DMAE’s poor ability to cross the blood-brain barrier, which restricts its effectiveness in acting as a metabolic precursor for the synthesis of choline within the brain itself.

For this reason, alternative delivery methods for DMAE were subsequently developed to ameliorate these drawbacks, in order to better capitalize on its potential as a clinical and nootropic agent.

Centrophenoxine aka Lucidril – More Effective than DMAE

Centrophenoxine – also known as meclofenidate, or under the brand name Lucidril – is a biosynthetic version of DMAE that is paired with a compound called parachlorophenoxyacetate (pCPA) in order to improve its ability to pass through the blood-brain barrier.

Nonetheless, DMAE remains the primary active compound of centrophenoxine, and centrophenoxine therefore retains the same structure and effect as naturally-occurring DMAE, while also being more effective overall as a therapeutic agent.

Like DMAE, centrophenoxine ultimately increases the brain’s ability to synthesize and use cholinergic neurotransmitters, which has led to its extensive use in clinical settings as a dietary supplement for treating the symptoms of memory-related disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease and senile dementia, as well as normal age-related declines in memory and cognitive ability.

Centrophenoxine has repeatedly been shown to improve memory-related function in such patients, and also appears to have a variety of additional effects in improving learning ability, memory retention, and enhancing mood. It also appears to have a wide range of other beneficial effects, including acting as an anti-oxidant and an anti-aging compound.

For these reasons, centrophenoxine has been widely-adopted by nootropic users for its anti-aging and potential cognition-enhancing properties.


While the precise mechanisms of its effects are still the subject of ongoing study, the ultimate effect of centrophenoxine is to increase the availability of cholinergic neurotransmitters throughout the brain at large. This includes acetylcholine, the neurotransmitter most consistently implicated in learning, memory formation, and mental alertness (“arousal”). Acetylcholine is also intimately involved in neuromuscular control, where it facilitates communication between the nervous system and the body’s muscles.

Importantly, a wide variety of other common nootropics in the “racetam” family – such as the exceptionally popular piracetam – are critically dependent on the body’s supply of cholinergic compounds to exert their enhancing effects on brain function. Centrophenoxine may therefore be of considerable benefit when “stacked” with other compounds in a nootropic regimen.

In general, low- or insufficient levels of cerebral acetylcholine can manifest as a lack of energy and/or difficulties in maintaining focus. It can also impede the formation of new memories by decreasing the ease with which the brain’s neurons can establish new connections among each other (through a process known as long-term potentiation).

In contrast, restoring or boosting acetylcholine levels with nootropic supplements such as centrophenoxine may improve learning and memory. Psychologically, it can also result in a mild stimulant effect, enhancing one’s mood, motivation and/or ability to maintain focus.

Centrophenoxine supplementation can also lead to metabolic benefits, increasing the efficiency with which the brain uses oxygen and glucose, which may account for some its cognitive enhancement effects.

Centrophenoxine is also a highly potent anti-aging compound, due to its ability to inhibit the build-up of lipofuscin, a metabolic side-product of aging. It has also been found to possess significant anti-oxidant properties, effectively reversing the adverse effects of bodily toxins and free radicals on various aspects of neuronal health. This gives centrophenoxine the potential to act as a neuro-protectant and anti-aging supplement.

Primary effects

Anti-aging / Anti-oxidation Effects of DMAE Counterpart Lucidril

As the brain gets older, its cellular components accumulate oxidative damage from free radicals that circulate throughout the body. The cumulative effect of this damage over time is believed to be a significant contributor to the neurodegenerative effects of normal aging.

Interestingly, nootropic compounds such as centrophenoxine have the ability to “scavenge” (remove) free radicals from the body, therefore effectively fighting the effects of aging in the brain.

For example, a variety of clinical studies in rats have shown that centrophenoxine reduces cellular damage from exposure to free-radicals, and seemingly improves the resulting deficits in memory and cognition.

Similarly, damage from oxidative stress is also implicated as an important casual factor in the development in certain common neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s disease – and several studies in rat models of Parkinson’s disease have shown that centrophenoxine not only plays a protective role in preventing cellular damage, but also recovers some of the primary motor deficits that result.

RNA synthesis and repair

Another effect of normal aging is that it becomes progressively more difficult for the body’s cells to use RNA transcription processes to repair cellular damage and replicate themselves.

Fortunately, DMAE-containing compounds such as centrophenoxine promote the synthesis of cellular RNA and other essential chemicals in the brain, which can fight the effects of aging by helping the body to maintain the integrity of its natural repair mechanisms.


Perhaps the most important anti-aging effect of centrophenoxine – and one that appears to be relatively unique to it among nootropics at large – is its ability to reduce or even eliminate the buildup of lipofuscin.

Lipofuscin is a metabolic waste product present in aging cells that causes brain cells to gradually become less efficient and eventually die off.

The impact of age-related lipofuscin build-up has been demonstrated in elderly mice, who exhibit a variety of learning- and memory-related deficits. Crucially, these deleterious age-related effects on cognition can be effectively reversed with centrophenoxine treatment, thereby demonstrating its significant potential as an anti-aging nootropic supplement.

Cognitive effects

In addition to its anti-oxidant, anti-aging, and general neuro-protective effects, centrophenoxine is also believed to confer a variety of benefits to various aspects of cognition, learning, memory, and even mood.

Much of the extant data regarding centrophenoxine’s cognitive effects have come from animal studies, both in healthy animals as well as in animal models of brain injury and various other neurodegenerative disorders. For example, a study in rats from 2004 observed that 37 days of centrophenoxine supplementation was sufficient to substantially recover the neuronal damage from experimentally-induced ischemic stroke. In addition, it also recovered their higher-level mental functions, as detected by behavioral tasks involving spatial memory.

A related rat study from 2009 further confirmed the beneficial effects of centrophenoxine on reversing memory-related cognitive deficits caused by artificially-induced acetylcholine shortages in rat’s brains. The authors demonstrated that the DMAE contained in supplements like centrophenoxine are indeed effective at enhancing memory, and concluded that these results are likely to generalize to healthy subjects as well.

Finally, a Russian study from 2008 provided additional evidence for centrophenoxine’s cognition-boosting effects in healthy animals, namely by showing that even an acute (one-time) dose of centrophenoxine was sufficient to significantly improve the performance of healthy mice on a behavioral task of spatial reasoning and memory.

Further evidence of centrophenoxine’s cognitive effects have been furnished by clinical studies in human populations. For example, a study of dementia patients demonstrated that an 8-week course of centrophenoxine treatment was sufficient to enhance their performance on a variety of psychometric assessment tests of cognition and memory.

Some additional evidence indicates that these potential benefits are not limited only to clinical populations. For example, a double-blind study in healthy, fit elderly populations showed that subjects administered centrophenoxine were better able to transfer new information into long-term memory, and also reported higher levels of mental alertness.

Closely-related neuropharmacological studies have provided strong indications that centrophenoxine’s neurobiological effects are similar in other healthy, normal subject populations, and that its benefits are therefore not restricted specifically to elderly or other clinical populations.

Study of centrophenoxine’s effects on the electrical activity of the brain suggests that it may achieve its beneficial effects on cognition, learning and memory by acting similarly to amphetamines, despite being a comparatively more “natural” compound.


Finally, there is also some evidence that centrophenoxine can positively affect mood.

For example, a study in rats showed that centrophenoxine administration was able to make rats significantly less prone to anxiety from experimentally-induced stress, allowing them to behave as they normally would in an otherwise unpredictable environment. Relatedly, similar studies in humans have shown that centrophenoxine can have a significant effect in stabilizing one’s mood, there potentially making people more resilient in the face of emotional disturbances.

Dosage & Usage information for Centrophenoxine (The new DMAE)

The standard dose for centrophenoxine in humans ranges from 250-1,000mg per day. This total amount is often spread out over multiple smaller doses, particularly for doses in the higher range.

Multiple smaller doses is also likely preferable for nootropic use, as this will ensure that the brain is getting a relatively constant amount throughout the day (as opposed to spiking early and diminishing over time).

Centrophenoxine is a fat-soluble compound that is metabolized in the liver. While not strictly necessary, its fat-solubility suggests that it may be ideal to take it alongside a full meal, as this may result in greater metabolism of the active DMAE.

Side-effects & safety information

Centrophenoxine – and DMAE in general – have not been reported to have any known toxicity effects, and current evidence therefore suggests that DMAE supplementation is highly safe.

Side-effects, although possible, are nevertheless relatively rare. Potential adverse effects most frequently involve headaches, nausea, dizziness, and other mild gastrointestinal issues.

Centrophenoxine is has also sometimes been reported to cause insomnia, although it is likely that this would have been due to its mild stimulant properties, and could have occurred if subjects took their supplements too close to bedtime.

In general, centrophenoxine’s side-effects tend to be a straightforward result of excessive dose. This means that any ill effects can be easily reversed and subsequently prevented by reducing one’s dose, or by taking occasional breaks from the supplementation regime.

As with all supplements, it is best to start with a low dose and build the dosage up gradually, as needed.


As with most supplements, toxicity studies have not investigated its effects on fetal development, and therefore should be avoided entirely during pregnancy.

Similarly, supplements such as centrophenoxine should not be taken by anyone with a history of seizures, as significantly increasing the levels of entire neurotransmitter families in the brain can lead to unpredictable effects in these populations.

Finally, although centrophenoxine and other DMAE-based supplements appear to have some mood-stabilizing or anti-anxiety effects, they should nonetheless not be taken as a medication replacement for those with a history of depression or anxiety-related diagnoses, as it is unlikely that its effects will be strong enough for those with diagnosed mood disorders.


Centrophenoxine is an affordable, safe, and effective nootropic that has been widely reported to boost learning and memory-related functions.

It is also a potent anti-aging compound, and therefore help stave off and even combat the steady, cumulative effects of normal aging.

Lastly, given that many other nootropic supplements rely on the brain’s own acetylcholine stores to be fully effective, centrophenoxine is a good candidate for “stacking” with other supplements.

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