Coluracetam Nootropic Effects, Experience, Dosage and More

Coluracetam is a newer member to the Racetam family of Nootropics with similar cognitive enhancing properties typical to this class but its key benefits may lay particularly in its helpfulness in the treatment of major depressive disorder with generalized anxiety.

Type: Racetam Nootropic
Used For: Mood Enhancement, Focus, Depression, Anxiety, Enhancing Cognition, Memory, Improving Vision
Half-Life: 2hrs-3hrs
Typical Dosage: 20 mg-80 mg per day
Drug Interactions: Unknown (Limited Research)
Supplement Interactions: Unknown (Limited Research)

What is Coluracetam?

Coluracetam (BCI-540 formerly MKC-231) is a fast-acting Nootropic that belongs to the group of Racetams. It is a synthetically produced compound that is thought to be structured and work in a uniquely different way from other Racetams but may share certain similar effects. It is generally recognized for enhancing memory and learning alongside positive effects on anxiety and depression.

What is Coluracetam Used For?It was originally developed in 2005 by Japan’s Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corporation in hopes to treat Alzheimer’s Disease.

In clinical trials, the drug failed to reach the endpoints and the license was then transferred to Braincells Inc. which was a California based biopharmaceutical company, for further testing on its effects.

The results suggested that Coluracetam is a promising potential treatment for MDD (major depressive disorder) and for generalized anxiety.

In addition, a small amount of evidence suggested that Coluracetam may affect areas of the brain that are linked to visual processing, enhancing colors, shapes and improving eyesight. Future potential medical use for optical and retinal nerve damage may be a possibility and this is in fact how this Nootropic got its name.

Furthermore, the proposed primary mechanism of action of Coluracetam is as a choline uptake enhancer that acts specifically on memory function. Since choline is needed to synthesize the neurotransmitter Acetylcholine, involved in memory formation, focus and cognition, increasing available choline can lead to higher levels of this neurotransmitter which may account for the reported cognitive enhancing effects of this compound.

As a fairly new member to the Racetam class of Nootropics, its distribution is still very limited at this time, yet this compound has still been steadily gaining in popularity with thousands of individuals noting positive results.

In the US, it is sold as a dietary supplement only and is not an approved drug by the FDA to treat or prevent any conditions. It is not available over-the-counter in Canada or the UK, however, it is legal to import in small amounts considered for personal use. In other countries, laws can vary.

This article will examine the effects of Coluracetam, the potential benefits, side effects and dosage guidelines.

Coluracetam Effects

The most promising effects and benefits of Coluracetam are related to boosting both working and long-term memory, reducing symptoms of anxiety and depression and enhancing color vision.

Currently, there has been a limited amount of human testing on Coluracetam which may due to how new this compound is and evidence of the possible benefits of this compound can only be deduced from tests conducted on rats.

Anecdotally, there have been many users online reporting the positive effects of Coluracetam, noting they experience reduced levels of anxiety and stress, improvements in vision and powerful effects on cognitive functions when taking this Nootropic, especially when using it in combination with other racetams.

Coluracetam is a derivative of Piracetam, the first Racetam ever developed. This compound belongs to the wider Racetam family of Nootropics which are believed to modulate Acetylcholine (ACh), an important neurotransmitter or chemical messenger thought to be highly involved in memory formation, learning capacity, attention and focus.

However, Coluracetam is unique in its method of action. Choline is needed to synthesize Acetylcholine (Ach) and this Nootropic is thought to help raise levels of this brain chemical by enhancing the uptake of Choline in the neurons (even if they are impaired) rather than stimulating the sensitivity of ACh receptors.

This may lead to improvements in the level and efficiency of this nutrients use throughout the body and the brain. Specifically, Coluracetam is thought to interact with the process of HACU (High-Affinity Choline Uptake) which targets choline absorption into the neurons.

Increasing the availability of choline means the neurons have the necessary amount to synthesize Acetylcholine and these actions are thought to lead to positive effects on cognition, alertness, concentration and memory.

In testing on rats, Coluracetam has shown to improve memory. These improvements were also observed to continue even when the administration of this substance was discontinued three days prior, leading to an indication that it may have some kind of long-term positive effect or restoration on memory abilities.

In addition, Coluracetam may improve mood, relieving symptoms of depression and quieting anxiety by enhancing choline uptake. Deficiencies of this nutrient have been associated with negative changes in mood and mood disorders. This Nootropic may also help improve AMPA potentiation which may increase the effectiveness of Glutamate, a neurotransmitter associated with synaptic plasticity or helping neurons make new connections.

There is no evidence to explain how this process exactly works but in a trial conducted by Braincells Inc, Coluracetam had shown to be a promising agent in the treatment of MDD (Major Depressive Disorder) with generalized anxiety. In 36% of participants (after two doses of 80 mg each) it demonstrated to improve symptoms which were especially pronounced in those that have previously found no relief when using standard anti-depressants.

Finally, one benefit that users have often reported is an enhancement in color vision and visual clarity which is commonly described as having “sharper vision” although there is no scientific evidence that explains how this effect may occur.

Coluracetam Side Effects

Coluracetam has limited research history and toxicity levels have not been determined. However, this Nootropic seems to work similarly and share a common structure with other popular Racetams supplements deducing that it may share similar safety profiles as the others in this class and be relatively safe.

Braincells corporation did not report any adverse side effects in participants when this compound was used up to a total daily dosage of 240 mg.

Headaches are the most commonly reported side effect in general when using Racetams and may potentially occur. You may want to consider stacking Coluracetam with choline such as CentrophenoxineAlpha GPC or CDP Choline which can help to alleviate this problem for most people.

In addition, Coluracetam may cause nausea, daytime sleepiness, anxiety and nervousness in some people which may be related to unusually high doses or sensitivity. If this occurs, you may want to try lowering the dosage.

Coluracetam Suggested Dosage

Due to the newness of this Nootropic and most research being conducted on rats, there are no recommended dosage guidelines. Anecdotal user reports suggest dosing between 20mg- 80mg per day in total. At the higher end, the dosage can be divided into three to four administrations.

It is recommended to always stay within the lowest dose available when starting on any new Nootropic supplement. This helps you gauge your body’s effect and reaction to the substance before raising the dosage. In this case, starting at 5 mg-20mg daily may be sufficient to give you positive effects and is especially recommended if you are new to Nootropics.

Some more experienced Racetam Nootropic users have suggested 200mg per day in total as an adequate dosage to achieve desired results.

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  2. Bessho T, Takashina K, Eguchi J, Komatsu T, Saito K. MKC-231, a choline-uptake enhancer: (1) long-lasting cognitive improvement after repeated administration in AF64A-treated rats. J Neural Transm (Vienna). 2008 Jul;115(7):1019-25. doi: 10.1007/s00702-008-0053-4. Epub 2008 May 7.[source]
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  4. BrainCells Inc. Announces Results from Exploratory Phase 2a Trial of BCI-540 in Depression With Anxiety[source]
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  6. Akaike A, Maeda T, Kaneko S, Tamura Y. Protective effect of MKC-231, a novel high affinity choline uptake enhancer, on glutamate cytotoxicity in cultured cortical neurons. Jpn J Pharmacol. 1998 Feb;76(2):219-22.[source]
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