One of the most venerable of the anti-aging compounds, centrophenoxine is a combination of dimethylaminoethanol (DMAE), a natural substance found in the human body, and auxin, a plant growth hormone. Although new research on centrophenoxine is limited, many experts feel that its potential anti-aging benefits may stem from its proven ability to combat free radicals, highly reactive molecules that damage cells and that many experts regard as a central feature of aging. Centrophenoxine has also been shown in some studies to boost memory and mental acuity in humans, and to combat cellular aging and increase life span in lab animals.
An experiment by Kalidas Nandy, Ph.D., of the Boston University School of Medicine found that centrophenoxine reduced buildup of lipofuscin, a pigment that accumulates in aging cells and can interfere with their functioning. Other research indicates that centrophenoxine can shore up cell membranes and increase cellular manufacture of RNA and certain proteins, which tend to decline with age. But the real eye-opener is a study by Imre Zs.-Nagy, M.D., of the Hungarian-Italian Verzar Laboratory for Experimental Gerontology, in which centrophenoxine extended life span in lab rats by as much as 33 percent.
Among the most promising of the human trials of centrophenoxine is a 1989 study in which the drug improved memory and learning in 50 elderly demented patients by as much as 48 percent.
Although centrophenoxine has not been shown to be toxic in animal tests, it should not be used by nursing mothers, or by people with high blood pressure, convulsions or involuntary musculoskeletal movements caused by such conditions as Parkinson’s disease.
A strong indication of the potency of centrophenoxine comes from Europe, where it is used in hospitals to revive patients in alcoholic or post-traumatic coma. Some European doctors routinely prescribe it to treat memory disorders or dementia. Although not marketed in the US, it is obtainable by mail order, and is among the most reliable-and certainly the most praised-of the “smart drugs” that are taken by people seeking to boost mental performance.
Excerpted from BRAIN BOOSTERS: Foods & Drugs That Make You Smarter
Commonly known by its trade name, Lucidril, centrophenoxine rejuvenates brain cells and reverses the aging process by getting rid of lipofuscin deposits, which are cellular garbage created by the buildup of toxic waste by-products of cellular metabolism. You might think of centrophenoxine as the “garbage man of the brain.” Lipofuscin deposits in the skin are the brown age spots or liver spots commonly seen in older people. Lipofuscin deposits build up in brain cells, causing neurons to die, which results in a decline in mental functioning.
Animal studies indicate an inverse relationship between lipofuscin deposits and learning. That is, the greater the lipofuscin in the brain cells, the less the learning ability; the less lipofuscin, the greater the learning ability. After taking centrophenoxine people report greater alertness and increased feelings of stimulation. Animal studies show improvements in learning.
The rejuvenating effects in humans is believed to be produced by regeneration of parts of the neurons. Centrophenoxine breaks down into dimethylaminoethanol (DMAE) in the blood stream. DMAE is normally found in small quantities in the brain. It is a free-radical scavenger, and has a variety of beneficial brain-boosting effects, including improving mood, intelligence, memory, and learning ability.
Centrophenoxine stimulates energy production. The uptake of glucose or sugar, which is essential for energy production, is increased by centrophenoxine. In the process of producing energy, oxygen is consumed and carbon dioxide created as a by-product. Both oxygen consumption and CO2 production are increased by centrophenoxine. The side effects are similar to those experienced by people taking too much of the nutrient choline. These symptoms are eliminated by reducing the dosage. People on an anti-cholinergic diet should not use centrophenoxine. Centrophenoxine is not currently available in the U.S. It is sold in Europe, however.