Noopept has been shown to have multiple effects on cognition and brain health, which is why it tends to be a favored nootropic supplement. However, its pharmacological properties are not always understood by most users. Studies have shown that a majority of Noopept’s benefits on cognition stem from its ability to affect the central nervous system. Mostly, Noopept has been shown to affect the growth and maintenance of neurons and synaptic connections. It has also been shown to display anxiolytic (anxiety quelling) properties, neuroprotective properties, and antioxidant properties.
A primary method of action for Noopept’s effect on cognition is through its influence on the nervous system. This primarily occurs due to its effects on Nerve growth factor (NGF) and Brain-derived neurotrophic factor. NGF is a molecule responsible for maintaining the growth and maintenance of sensory and sympathetic neurons. These neurons are mainly involved in processing information from sensory sites around the body. They are also involved in other processes, including autonomic ones like breathing and temperature control. However, Brain-derived neurotrophic factor is responsible for the growth and maintenance of neurons in the peripheral and central nervous system. It also encourages the differentiation of new synapses and neurons in the brain, mostly in areas of the brain responsible for learning and memory.
An increase in NGF and BDNF caused by Noopept may help to encourage the growth and development of neurons and synapses that are beneficial to cognitive functions. Studies have found this may help with learning, memory recall, and memory retention. Noopept can increase the generation of neurons from neural stem cells (neurogenesis) and act as an antioxidant while increasing the body’s innate antioxidant production processes. Studies have shown that Noopept increases antioxidant production by the cells, but it also inhibits toxic levels of excess glutamate and calcium in the neurons. These pharmacological properties may be the primary methods of action for Noopept’s benefit on overall brain health and general cognition.
Noopept has also been shown to provide a slight psychostimulatory effect. This occurs during Noopept’s stimulation of NMDA receptors. These receptors in the brain are mostly responsible for the release and modulation of glutamate (an excitatory neurotransmitter). Aside from its stimulating effect, it has also been shown to provide a selective anxiolytic effect by its inhibition of activity in the hippocampus, which is thought to be related to anxiety. This is primarily due to an increase in Noopept’s metabolite, gamma-Aminobutyric acid (GABA- an inhibitory neurotransmitter) in the hippocampus. These pharmacological effects may be primarily responsible for Noopept’s benefits to mental performance and mood.