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Noopept vs Pramiracetam

 

The nootropics noopept and piracetam are two popular cognitive enhancers available on the market today. Both supplements are safe for consumption and are available in many countries.

Pramiracetam is a nootropic derived from piracetam and is considered to be more potent[1]. Noopept is a peptide-derived nootropic that is closely related to the racetam family.

Let’s go into a little detail on both of these supplements.

What is noopept?

This cognitive enhancer is said to be stronger than piracetam and thus much more potent (10-30mg of noopept vs. 2-4g of piracetam). This nootropic is a very popular memory supplement and is categorized as a neuroprotectant and psychostimulant[2].

How does noopept work?

Noopept ‘s mechanism of action is similar to the that of the racetam family. Despite noopept not technically being categorized as a recetam, its mechanism of action still entails stimulating the acetylcholine system as well as dopamine receptor sites. Acetylcholine is the neurotransmitter responsible for learning, so boosting the amount and duration of exposure is obviously a major plus. Furthermore, noopept also stimulates certain serotonin receptors which contributes to its mood boosting qualities[3].

Benefits of noopept

Noopept comes with many benefits:

• Increase in attention and memory
• Improvement in reflexes and perception
• Enhancement in logical thinking
• Boost in mood

The recommended dosage for noopept is 10-30mg taken daily. Noopept effects vary from person to person and some noticeable side effects include headache, insomnia, and fatigue. Since noopept is extremely potent, dosage should be strictly adhered to.

What is pramiracetam?

Pramiracetam is a nootropic that belongs to the racetam family and has been in use since the early 1980s. It shows potential in cognitive enhancement and is used to help alleviate symptoms of cognitive diseases [4].

Pramiracetam How does it Work?

Like its compatriots in the racetam family, pramiracetam works by increasing the uptake of choline in the brain thereby aiding in the efficient functioning of the acetylcholine system. This efficiency contributes greatly to memory formation and general cognition[5]. Such a mechanism of action has made pramiracetam one of the favorites among the cognitive enhancer supplements.

Pramiracetam Benefits

The most recognized benefits of pramiracetam include:
• Enhancement in mood
• Increase in long and short-term memory formation
• Increase in blood flow in the brain
Neuroprotective qualities
• Decreases the influence of amnesiac drugs

Pramiracetam Dosage

Pramiracetam is considered one of the strongest racetams; the recommended dosage is 250mg per day[6]. More experienced users of pramiracetam can take up to 400mg to 500mg twice daily. Due to the bitter taste that pramiracetam powder has, many users opt to purchase pramiracetam capsules instead (or flavors can be used to mask the taste as well). Be sure not to take pramiracetam sublingually as it may cause chemical burns.

Noopept vs Pramiracetam

Noopept and pramiracetam have also been used together in a nootropic stack and users claim that the emotionally dulling effect of pramiracetam counters the irritability effect of noopept. [7].

Both supplements are among the list of the strongest (produces the most noticeable effect) nootropics. For first-time users, increased mental clarity and enhanced cognition are noticeable[8].

If you haven’t taken these nootropics before, start with one at a time so you can experience their benefits in isolation. Then, if you decide to stack them you will have a higher chance of comprehending any synergistic effects of the stack.

As to the question of noopept vs pramiracetam and which among the two is the better nootropic, there isn’t always a definite answer. It would really depend for what you are aiming. One thing is for sure: these two supplements are among the strongest and should be handled with care. One deciding factor could be the methods of administration (see below).

I personally prefer noopept as it requires a much smaller dosage, so I don’t need to order very much at a time. Pramiracetam tends to make me too serious and limits my creativity.

Differences In Administration

Noopept’s cognitive enhancing effects are also more pronounces when taken sublingually, usually with a microscoop placed under the tongue. This usually isn’t done with pramiracetam since it can be caustic if kept in contact with areas under the tongue. Due to pramiracetam’s lack of dosage administration choices, you are forced to wait longer due to regular oral administration.

Sources

1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pramiracetam
2. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2011259
3. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ddr.430030503/abstract
4. http://www.braintropic.com/racetam-comparison/
5. http://www.longecity.org/forum/topic/60676-pramiracetam-noopept-exam-log/
6. http://www.whatarenootropics.com/what-best-racetam-nootropic/

Caffeine Extraction 101

Here we look at three caffeine extraction methods:
Extracting caffeine from caffeine pills, from coffee grounds, and from tea leaves/bags.

Caffeine is a stimulant and is found within nature in both the tea bush and the coffee plant. Kola nuts and guarana berries also are a rich source of caffeine. Caffeine is excellent for keeping you mentally alert and for warding off drowsiness. Most cultures the world over ingest some form of caffeine-related beverage or food every day.

However, these extraction methods below are impractical and are only for fun. Caffeine is much cheaper (time and money-wise) to buy in caffeine anhydrous powder format.

Method One – Extraction from Pills

Crushing a caffeine pill may seem like the easiest option. Here’s how –

What you need

A mortar and pestle or a wooden rolling pin
Caffeine pills (any generic kind)
Dichloromethane or other organic solvent such as 95%+ ethanol
Erlenmeyer flask
Fritted glass filter and vacuum pump
Watch glass or other glass cover for the Erlenmeyer flask
Büchner funnel

Instructions

  1. Begin in a well ventilated area
  2. Crush up the pills until they resemble a fine powder
  3. Transfer the powder to the Erlenmeyer flask
  4. Pour 120mL of DCM (dichloromethane) or ethanol into the flask
  5. Place the watch glass or cover on top and stir manually (or use a stir stick) until the solids sink to the bottom (only caffeine and povidone will be soluble in the DCM)
  6. Let the mixture settle until it forms two layers and wait until the solids form in the bottom
  7. Pour the solution into a fritted glass filter and use a vacuum pump to separate the liquid from the solids
  8. Repeat this process until the filtrate is almost. But use 50mL of DCM (instead of the original 120mL) in the Erlenmeyer flask each time.
  9. Stop this process either after four cycles or once the solution is almost clear
  10. Remove the DCM via distillation. Then break up the left over powder at the bottom of the flask and transfer the powder to a beaker
  11. Recrystallize the powder by dissolving it in hot water. The impurities should remain soluble while heating and the caffeine should drop out of solution.
  12. Let the solution cool and then place in a freezer once at room temperature so that more caffeine recrystallizes.
  13. Pull the caffeine out of the freezer and add it to a Büchner funnel. Once it “deflates”, turn off the vacuum and add cold water.
  14. Turn the vacuum on again. The caffeine should look purer/whiter than before
  15. Repeat this Büchner funnel process 1-2 more times until the caffeine stops becoming whiter
  16. Run the vacuum until the caffeine is dry
  17. transfer the caffeine to a crystallizing dish and heat (at low temp) in the oven
  18. Once dry, crush the caffeine into a fine powder. This is your yielded pure caffeine.

Caffeine Pill Extraction Instructional Video

Method Two – Extraction from Tea Leaves

This method requires several more steps and more chemistry equipment. It’s technically more of an extraction than the caffeine pills, since the pill method was more of a separation process.

This video demonstrates the procedure below.

What you need
Water
6 tea bags
6 grams of Na2CO3 (sodium carbonate)
Filter paper
A Separatory funnel
An Erlenmeyer flask
Dichloromethane (DCM)

Instructions

  1. Place the tea bags, water, and sodium carbonate while swirling the mixture gently
  2. Bring the solution to a boil for about 10 minutes
  3. Introduce a lid to limit water loss. Remove the lid and let the bubbles settle if it starts overflowing.
  4. Transfer the mixture to an Erlenmeyer flask while keeping the tea bags in the beaker
  5. Add 60mL of water and repeat the process
  6. Add this new batch of tea to the existing batch in the Erlenmeyer flask
  7. OPTIONAL: Filter the tea extract before the separation process
  8. Transfer the tea extract to a separatory funnel and add DCM (dichloromethane) to the funnel
  9. Cap the separatory funnel and shake gently
  10. Allow the layers to settle and drain the bottom DCM layer
  11. Repeat this process three times and use 15mL of DCM each time
  12. Set up distillation to remove the DCM
  13. Remove the crude caffeine from the flask and transfer to a test tube.
  14. Add DCM to the test tube and boil it off until you are left with caffeine crystals.
  15. Vacuum filter the crystals and wash them using cold 95% ethanol
  16. Dry the crystals under vacuum

Method Three – Extraction from Coffee

This is basically the same process as the tea extraction.
What you need
Ground coffee
Sodium carbonate
Distilled water
Watch glass (optiona)
Beaker
Paper coffee filters
Dichloromethane (DCM)
A Separatory funnel
Instructions

  1. Add 10g of ground coffee, 4g of sodium carbonate, and 60mL of distilled water to a beaker
  2. Place a watch glass on top and boil the mixture for at least 15 minutes. To limit foaming, shake the beaker.
  3. Filter the grinds from the solution using gravity filtration with a paper filter. Place the watch glass on top of the filter to limit heat loss while filtering.
  4. Wash the original flask with boiling water and refilter. Then add another 100mL of water while filtering. Microwave the gravity filter if it becomes too cool.
  5. Transfer the coffee to the separatory funnel and add 15mL of DCM.
  6. Once the caffeine separates at the bottom, pour only the caffeine (the clear layer) into a beaker.
  7. After filtering the first time, refilter with another 15mL of DCM, then a final, third time with 10mL of DCM.
  8. You should be left with a cloudy solution. Pour this back into the filter and add a saturated salt solution to pull out the water.
  9. After filtering, add this solution to a beaker and add a drying agent, such as molecular sieves, to remove remaining water. Do this for 20 minutes.
  10. Add this solution to a clean beaker. Bring this to a boil to remove DCM the solvent. Be careful not to overheat and burn the remaining caffeine. DCM has a low boiling point.
  11. You should be left with brown, crude caffeine. Recrystallize this using 95% ethanol and place in a freezer.
  12. Take the contents out of the freezer and place in a vacuum filter. Dry in the vacuum for 30 minutes. This should yield pure, white caffeine.

Instructional Video

Conclusion

Whichever method you choose to do so, do remember that pure caffeine is extremely potent and it is important to read up on the effects in order to know exactly how much to use in your drinks, baking, and so on.