A pharmaceutical drug originally developed to treat Alzheimer’s, Coluracetam is powerful and effective nootropic.

Part of the racetam family, it’s used like other smart drugs – for studying, concentration, and memory, though it’s also regarded as a promising antidepressant/anti-anxiety treatment.

Coluracetam offers some of the benefits of oxiracetam, phenylpiracetam, and piracetam at a lower dosage.

What is Coluracetam?

Developed in Japan by the Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corporation in 2005, Coluracetam is a popular nootropic that has been on the market since 2013.

It hasn’t yet gained the popularity of Phenylpiracetam, Piracetam, and other racetams, but has a growing number of ardent users, including students and people with depression and anxiety.

Used as a cognitive enhancer in non-clinical settings, Coluracetam synthesizes Acetylcholine and increases choline uptake.

Users report a slight throbbing in the temples after taking the drug, but it soon dissipates, and they begin to feel alert and experience a clearer, more distinct field of vision.

Acetylcholine is made from choline. Even if you take Coluracetam or another supplement to improve Acetylcholine levels, it’s important to get choline from the foods you eat.

Eggs, meat, poultry, fish, dairy products, and spinach, are good sources of choline, which is a member of the B vitamin family.

Coluracetam is said to have a more relaxed effect than Noopept and other Racetams. It might be worth checking out if you’re sensitive to the potent stimulant properties of some nootropics.

It’s also water-soluble, so you may want to take it with B-complex vitamins, fish oil or other water soluble supplements. Users report it lasts three to four hours, with brief mood-brightening effects along with the longer-lasting cognitive ones.

Matcha green tea and gingko Biloba have the same mild attention-sharpening effects as Coluracetam and are easier to buy than other Racetams. You can buy them at your local health food store.

Coluracetam is legal to buy and sell in the U.S. It is available by prescription in the U.K., but it’s legal to possess without a prescription.

Other names

MKC-231, BCI-540, 3-b quinolin-4-yl)acetoamide

Editor’s Note

One of the newest members of the Racetam family, the jury,’s still out on Coluracetam, as it hasn’t garnered enough studies and user reviews to assess its potential.

The few reports we have seen, though, are positive. The main takeaway for non-clinical users? Coluracetam may be worth it if you can’t use Noopept or other Racetams.

There aren’t a lot of studies or user reports to ascertain its effectiveness, so you’ll need to take a small dose and draw your own conclusions.

There are two distinct ways nootropics – or any supplement- can help your brainpower for studying and concentration.

A supplement can give you super-intense focus and fast, laser-sharp thinking (like Noopept or Aniracetam), but creative, right-brain-oriented types may prefer a kinder, gentler form of concentration. Coluracetam is the latter, as it is also used for anti-anxiety purposes.

Coluracetam has been studied for the treatment of schizophrenia. Researchers treated rats exposed to cocaine, phencyclidine, and carbachol with Coluracetam.

The results showed Coluracetam reduced locomotor dysfunction and helped stop the decline in choline acetyltransferase cells. Based on this, researchers believe Coluracetam may be a viable treatment for schizophrenia.

This racetam may also work on the part of your brain responsible for vision. Some users report an increase in visual clarity, with colors and shapes appearing sharper and more defined. However, no psychedelic effects are evident; it merely enhances eyesight.

Since Coluracetam shows promise for relieving anxiety and depression, there are sure to be more studies conducted on this drug.

The state of California gave Coluracetam a “Qualifying Therapeutic Discovery Program Grant” due to its possible effectiveness for treating Anxiety and Major Depressive Disorders (MDD).

Coluracetam Reviews

Studies and expert reviews are minimal, but there are many user reviews for Coluracetam on message boards and social media.

The nootropics forum on Reddit contains several discussions about Coluracetam.

Reddit user Oakfan says:

“Coluracetam is by far my most favorite nootropic. It seems to work for as long as 3-4 days for me after dosing, and I would relate the effects closely to a strong dose of theanine and piracetam.

A review of liquid Coluracetam on states,

“Verbal memory is ON FIRE with this stuff. Words I forgot I knew come fast on this!” and “it gives you a calm sense of awareness.”

Much of the hype surrounding coluracetam comes from a study performed by BrainCells Inc, in which BCI-540 (coluracetam’s codename at the time) was investigated as a treatment for comorbid depression and generalized anxiety disorder. Patients in the experimental group were given 80mg of coluracetam either once or three times daily for a total of six weeks. In the subgroup where participants dose thrice daily, 36% responded positively to treatment versus 19% in the placebo group. Taking coluracetam once daily did not have statistically significant results.

Previous research done in Japan didn’t produce results on clinical efficacy, but it did confirm a major part of coluracetam’s mechanism of action, which involves choline uptake in the brain.

Benefits and Effects

Anxiety and Depression

There is some talk in the psychological community about the effectiveness of Coluracetam to treat anxiety.

Patients who showed little or no improvement with other antidepressants experienced some success with Coluracetam.

Its high bioavailability and its laidback effect on brain cells make it a Racetam to watch for the serious treatment of anxiety.

A study conducted by the scientific research company BrainCells, Inc. showed that three doses of 80 mg a day (240 mg a day) were effective in treating generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), co-existing with depression.

Further studies are needed to prove its worth as an antidepressant/anti-anxiety treatment.

Alzheimer’s Disease

The Open Chemistry Database lists Coluracetam as having a patent as a therapeutic method or treatment for Alzheimer’s disease and other neurological disorders.

Alzheimer’s Disease is a motor neuron disease. When neurons in the brain are damaged, they are unable to communicate with each other, causing loss of memory and cognitive function.

Alzheimer’s and neuron damage is linked to several factors besides simply getting old, including obesity, smoking, depression and poor diet.

Certain supplements and medications, including Coluracetam, have been shown to improve communications between neurons (nerve cells) and help patients regain memory and cognitive function.

Memory and Learning

A study showed Coluracetam improved memory in rats that were given 3 mg doses of the drug and the neuron-specific neurotoxin substance AF64A for eight days.

The rats were able to get through a Morris Water Maze three days after the last dosage. (There were only traces of Coluracetam in their systems at the three-day mark.)

You’ll be able to think clearly (and even recall some new memories) with Coluracetam, which is listed as a natural memory enhancer in this study by the Birla Institute of Technology in India.

How It Works

The neurotransmitter Acetylcholine is necessary to connect synapses and neurons in your brain and enhance plasticity.

High acetylcholine activity improves the ability to form and maintain memory, and may also aid the learning process.

All Racetams, including Coluracetam, increase acetylcholine production and slowly break down this chemical in the body.

Coluracetam works within the high-affinity choline uptake process (HACU) to absorb choline into neurons. By preserving choline and converting it into acetylcholine, Coluracetam increases attention and memory in individuals with damaged neurons.

When neurons are impaired, Coluracetam can help choline absorption, which makes it a safe treatment for Alzheimer’s patients. How Coluracetam works on people with healthy neurons hasn’t been conclusively studied yet.

For treatment of anxiety or depression, Coluracetam works by blocking out excess stimuli that cause these feelings. It stimulates acetylcholine activity in the brain’s nicotinic receptors to reduce the effects of stress.

It also affects AMPA (α-Amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazolepropionic acid) receptors linked to glutamate for better brain function and alertness. Glutamate is important to help your neurons make connections related to new memories.

Due to Coluracetam’s ability to work on the part of the brain safeguarding vision and color perception, doctors may be able to use it to repair optic nerve and retinal injuries.


Since it’s so new, there aren’t any officially recommended dosages for Coluracetam. Nootropics websites (including this one) suggest dosages of between 50-150 mg a day or 80 mg one to three times a day for depression/anxiety.

If you’re new to Coluracetam, or Racetams in general, start with a small dose and gradually increase it as you acclimate to the supplement.

Users report better results when Coluracetam is taken on an empty stomach. It can be taken orally (powder or capsule) or sublingually.

Coluracetam works rapidly, reaching its peak effectiveness within 30 minutes of dosing, and fading with three hours. This means you should time your dose with for studying, a particular event or a test.

Users may experience tolerance after using Coluracetam regularly. Using harm reduction practices and taking Coluracetam in small doses will prevent toxicity.

Side Effects

Because Coluracetam is so new, we don’t have much information on its side effects. Since it’s a racetam, you can probably expect headaches when first using it, but you can counteract that by stacking with choline or other nootropics.

As a reference point, other Racetams (eg, Phenylpiracetam and Oxiracetam), may cause nervousness, shakiness, or weight increases, as well as headaches. Check with your Coluracetam supplier for more information about side effects.


1. Coluracetam/Citicoline

Racetams are Cholinergics, so they’ll need a supplement that acts as an Acetylcholine source. Citicoline is a safe and efficient choline-based nootropic.

It is much better at improving brain function than a plain choline supplement and will accentuate Coluracetam’s effects while preventing headaches.

You can also stack Coluracetam with Centrophenoxine, another cholinergic that works as an Acetylcholine precursor. Centrophenoxine enhances brain plasticity and promotes memory formation and creative thought.

Alpha GPC is another choline-based nootropic suitable for stacking with Coluracetam.

2. Coluracetam/Piracetam/Adrafininil

Stack Coluracetam with another Racetam (Piracetam is a favorite) and Adrafinil. Coluracetam enhances cognitive function, helping you retain more of what you study and improves your decision-making abilities.

Piracetam aids verbal fluency, and Noopept sharpens your visual clarity and enhances Coluracetam’s anti-anxiety and pro-memory effects.

Adrafinil increases wakefulness to keep you from nodding off during an intense work or study session. (Some users add choline to the stack to prevent headaches.)


1. Noopept

Noopept is a potent cognitive enhancer. It’s derived from peptides and has neuroprotective qualities.

First used in Russia in the 1970s, Noopept is used to increase memory, mental energy, and learning ability. It boosts oxygen levels in the brain to enhance clarity.

Coluracetam vs. Noopept Comparison:

  • Coluracetam won’t give you laser-focus like Noopept. It has a more smooth and laidback effect, enabling you to make decisions and study without feeling anxious.
  • Noopept is so powerful you only need a small dose each day (10 to 30 mg). Coluracetam’s suggested dosage is between 50-240 mg a day.
  • Noopept is easy to buy online from nootropic sites and inexpensive. Coluracetam is also available from nootropic sites but on a limited basis.

2. Piracetam

Another Racetam, Piracetam was first synthesized in 1964. It’s shown to be a mild but reliable cognitive enhancer. It’s used for greater clarity, brain function, and motivation, and has slight mood-boosting effects.

Coluracetam vs. Piracetam Comparison:

  • Piracetam has been around since 1964; Coluracetam was developed in 2005.
  • Both supplements are recommended for age-related memory loss and Alzheimer’s.
  • Has a half-life of 5 hours with a recommended dose of 800-2400 mg per day; one study showed Coluracetam has a three-hour half-life with a suggested dose of between 50 and 240 mg a day.

3. Sunifiram

Hailed as an alternative to Adderall, Sunifiram can also be used instead of Coluracetam. A relatively new ampakine nootropic, it increases attention span, boosts mental energy, and enhances learning ability.

One of the best-selling ampakines, it’s cost-effective and is said to have a potency of 1000x that of Piracetam.

Coluracetam vs. Sunifiram Comparison:

  • Sunifiram is referred to as “Sunny” on some internet message boards, as it subtly promotes a better mood. Coluracetam is known mostly as a cognitive enhancer.
  • Sunifiram is easier to buy than Coluracetam, which is a new, largely untested SmartDrug
  • One study showed Sunifiram showed a definite improvement in cognitive function in mice, and Coluracetam showed memory improvement in rats in one study.


Coluracetam is a new Smart drug with some good user reviews and studies behind it. There’s not much bad news about it, except that it fades fast (within a few hours of dosing) and may cause headaches.

As long as you take a small dose of Coluracetam to test it out, there appear to be no significant adverse effects. Avoid large doses or prolonged use as this drug hasn’t been sufficiently tested for more than occasional use.

You can buy Coluracetam in powder form on Amazon. It’s also available in sublingual form from nootropics sites like Nootropics Depot.