Nootropics | Cognitive Enhancers | Nootropics Supplements

Nootropics Also referred to as smart drugsandcognitive enhancers, are supplements, drugs, and nutraceuticals that can help (if used properly) to improve mental functions such as concentration, cognition, memory, and motivation. Here at Nootropics City, we believe that nootropics can help to accomplish this if used responsibly in a recorded and measured manner.

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Nootropics | Cognitive Enhancers | Nootropics Supplements

Nootropics | definition of Nootropics by Medical dictionary

(redirected from Nootropics)Also found in: Dictionary.nootropic (n–trop’ik),

Denotes an agent having an effect on memory.


a chemical designed to increase brain metabolism.

There is little clinical evidence that most agents advertised as nootropics actually work as advertised.

Capable of improving or preserving memory, of potentiating learning, or of preventing cognitive decline or dementia.

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Nootropics | definition of Nootropics by Medical dictionary

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At Nootropics Depot, we carry a wide variety of nootropics capsules and powders. Browse our nootropics for sale below.

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Supplements to Support Brain and Body Function | Nootrobox …

Found in fish and krill oil, Omega-3 acts as a signal in the body and as the building blocks of cell membranes

Omega-3 fatty acids in Kado help the absorption of fat soluble vitamins (D & K)

The main types of Omega-3 fatty acids derived from animal sources are EPA (signaler to help reduce inflammation), DHA (promotes fluidity at synaptic junctions, where memories are formed in neural networks)

Kado contains a high 2:1 ratio of DHA:EPA for cognitive health

Improve memory and reaction time17,18,19

Supplementation has many other benefits for cardiovascular and metabolic health

Can reduce depression20

Shown to improve attention, executive function, and memory19,17,18

Protective against cognitive decline21

Helps reduce inflammation and soreness after exercise22,23,24,25

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Supplements to Support Brain and Body Function | Nootrobox …

Nootropics | HVMN Biohacker Guide

Nootropics are a broad classification of cognition-enhancing compounds that produce minimal side effects and are suitable for long-term use. These compounds include those occurring in nature or already produced by the human body (such as neurotransmitters), and their synthetic analogs. We already regularly consume some of these chemicals: B vitamins, caffeine, and L-theanine, in our daily diets.

A fundamental aspect of human evolution has been the drive to augment our capabilities. The neocortex is the neural seat of abstract and higher order cognitive processes. As it grew, so did our ability to create. The invention of tools and weapons, writing, the steam engine, and the computer have exponentially increased our capacity to influence and understand the world around us. These advances are being driven by improved higher-order cognitive processing.1Fascinatingly, the practice of modulating our biology through naturally occurring flora predated all of the above discoveries. Indeed, Sumerian clay slabs as old as 5000 BC detail medicinal recipes which include over 250 plants2. The enhancement of human cognition through natural compounds followed, as people discovered plants containing caffeine, theanine, and other cognition-enhancing, or nootropic, agents.

There is an ancient precedent to humans using natural compounds to elevate cognitive performance. Incan warriors in the 15th century would ingest coca leaves (the basis for cocaine) before battle. Ethiopian hunters in the 10th century developed coffee bean paste to improve hunting stamina. Modern athletes ubiquitously consume protein powders and hormones to enhance their training, recovery, and performance. The most widely consumed psychoactive compound today is caffeine. Millions of people use coffee and tea to be more alert and focused.

The term nootropic is simply a descriptor, and this descriptor spans across all legal classifications of compounds. Broadly speaking, there are four main classifications:

Nootrobox stacks are strictly derived from the first category – compounds that are GRAS and approved for human consumption as dietary supplements.

The mechanisms by which nootropic compounds influence our cognition and neurophysiology are as diverse as those of prescription drugs. We present below our in-progress work, detailing the mechanisms, effects, and history of various nootropic compounds. Check in for updates and additions.

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Nootropics | HVMN Biohacker Guide

What is a Nootropic – What are nootropics?

The word nootropic is derived from the greek words noos, meaning mind, and trope, meaning turning. In essence, nootropic perform one function: they turn your mind to boost your cognitive abilities and make your mental state better in some way, shape, or form.

Different groups classify different drugs as nootropics, but for the most part, everyone agrees that nootropics have two defining characteristics:

Keep in mind that nootropics are not vitamins or minerals. Usually, theyre synthetic chemicals produced in laboratories. Theyre not essential to your bodys functions. Theyre add-ons in that you use them and you feel better, but if you dont, its not like your body is lacking anything otherwise required. We do advocate getting the proper amount of essential nutrients, and minerals as a starting point to improved cognitive health. Well talk about generally optimizing brain health (your cognitive baseline) through sleep, diet, and exercise a later post.

Were being relatively vague here because there is a wide spectrum of nootropics available today. And they all claim to do different things for you. Its up to you to pick the right nootropic for what you want to accomplish. Later posts will cover the different types of nootropics, as well as specific nootropics to use in certain scenarios for studying, for sharpness, for recovery after partying, etc.

After understanding what a nootropic is, the next question that begs to be asked is, How do they work?

Every nootropic affects your body in a different way. Its important to note the distinction between results and commonly referred to as working mechanisms. One thing that we also want to note is that nootropics are a very subjective experience, and although one person may have great results with a particular nootropic, another person may have no result when using that same nootropic.

If the working mechanism for a drug is known, we know exactly how it affects your body. As in, if you ingest drug A, it affects receptors X, Y, and Z. This modification to receptors X, Y, and Z produces effects B, C, and D.

If the working mechanism for a drug isnt known, then we only know A, B, C, and D in the above example. For most nootropics, there is speculation behind the working mechanisms, but there has not been any conclusive evidence of these claims. As such, the working mechanisms being discussed are theories, not fact.

Dont let this turn you off of nootropics as a safe way to improve your mental function. The human body is incredibly complex, and we havent even begun to understand how all the pieces of the puzzle fit together. We dont even know the working mechanisms for some of the most popular drugs sold worldwide.

Take acetaminophen (the active ingredient in Tylenol) as an example. There have been tens of thousands of studies conducted with this drug, and after studying human reactions to it over, and over, and over again, weve come to these three conclusions:

Youd think that after tens of thousands of studies, a working mechanism would have been found, right? Unfortunately not the working mechanism for acetaminophen isnt known, and it doesnt look like well know exactly how it works anytime soon.

Take this example and apply it to nootropics. The working mechanisms usually arent known, but after observing empirical evidence over, and over, and over again, we can come to some pretty consistent conclusions about them.

Now, we know what youre thinking; If these drugs claim to enhance your cognitive abilities but the working mechanisms arent 100% known, are they legal?

The answer is both yes and no.

Yes: most nootropics are perfectly legal to possess. This means that if a police officer were to see you taking one and stop you, hed likely be suspicious (nootropics often come in the form of white powder), but if he were to conduct a field test on it, you would not be arrested or issued a ticket. Your package wont be taken if inspected by customs, etc.

No: like dietary supplements, most nootropics arent approved by the FDA. All countries vary on the legality of nootropics. In Russia, most are legal, and many are prescription medicines. We suggest that you research the laws of your country regarding possession of a particular nootropic before you order. Those are just two examples. Always do your research on your specific countrys laws before purchasing any nootropic supplements.

The cool (and sometimes off-putting) thing about nootropics is that everyone reacts differently to each one. This is pretty standard with drugs in general if we take marijuana as an example, it relaxes some people, whereas it makes other anxious and paranoid. Its your personal reaction.

In general, the effects of nootropics are fairly mild. Theyre not meant to be stimulants like adderall, ritalin, vyvanse, or concerta. Instead, they aim to take your base level of cognitive performance and bring it up. Go from being able to give 100% when not taking nootropics, to being able to give 105% or 110% when you are. If you focus in on how the nootropic is affecting you, youll be able to tell, but with the vast majority of nootropics, you wont feel over-stimulated or anything of that nature, sometime the effects are rather subtle. One thing that we suggest is tracking the efficacy of the nootropics you take to really determine the value you are getting from nootropics; this is covered later.

Also, you should expect no comedown and no come up. Nootropics work in the background. When you dose, you wont feel a rush (although some do report a tingly feeling), and when the nootropic starts to wear off, you wont feel like youre crashing. Instead, youll slowly climb to where your cognitive abilities are enhanced, and then gradually ease off of that as the chemical is depleted until youre at your normal baseline mental state.

Every nootropic out there can be categorized into a certain subset of nootropics. Here are the main ones below all popular nootropics will fall into one of these categories. Well talk about some more specific nootropics later. If youd like to skip ahead to the best nootropics for beginners, click here

Racetams (One our of favorites)

All racetams (about 20 in total, depending on who you ask) are derived from the king: piracetam. After being synthesized in the early 1970s, piracetam quickly took its place at the vanguard of the nootropic movement if you ask someone to name a nootropic, piracetam will always be the first answer.

The formula for piracetam is C6H10N2O2, and most of its derivatives such a aniracetam, oxiracetam, and pramiracetam have certain elements added or removed from that base structure. Good ol piracetam provides a wide range of cognitive enhancements including improved memory, improved verbal articulation, improved long and short term memory, etc.

More often than not, a racetam is the base of any nootropic stack. Users often add other nootropics to enhance the effects of a racetam.

If youre diving into nootropics and want the surefire bet, choose piracetam. But if you have certain needs maybe you want more energy than piracetam, or you need a creative boost then its worth checking out its derivatives. Despite their formulaic similarities, users report substantially different effects when taking them.

Choline (usually paired with racetams)

Choline isnt usually used by itself in the nootropic landscape, but its a very common addition to any nootropic combination (stack). There are two reasons for this, choline itself gives you additional cognitive enhancements, and adding choline is theorized to boost the effects of any racetam that increases acetylcholine uptake. Choline was once classified as vitamin B4 and has since been reclassified as an essential nutrient and is metabolized by the body in acetylcholine.

Before going further I want to note that acetylcholine is an important neurotransmitter that is thought to be responsible for decision making and certain types of learning. Many nootropics have some effect on the way the body processes or interacts with acetylcholine and those effects generally have cognitive benefits when utilized responsibly.

To put it simply, adding in a choline source means that you have an increased amount of acetylcholine available in your body. Having plenty of acetylcholine is said to have cognitive enhancing benefits all by itself, but theyre usually amplified when you have another nootropic in the mix.

Also, there have been studies that suggest piracetam (and most other racetams) deplets the acetylcholine you havein your brain. If your body doesnot have enough acetylcholine, the end result is that youll often end up with headaches. The same works the other way, which is another reason why almost no one adds in a choline source without adding in a nootropic, as having too much acetylcholine (or anything else for that matter) is generally not a good thing. They balance each other out perfectly to give you cognitive enhancementand prevent you from getting headaches; its a symbiotic relationship that requires balancing.

Youll notice that there are two terms mentioned here acetylcholine and choline sources. Choline sources are the actual supplements you take, and once ingested, they increase your acetylcholine levels.Every choline source will produce a different amount of acetylcholine. Alpha GPC is considered to be the most potent with highest bioavailability. A rudimentary search will put you on the right track see what others users have paired with their particular nootropics to balance acetylcholine levels correctly. For more information on choline, check out our beginners guide to choline.

The Natural Ones

Natural nootropics are no different from what youd referred to as natural herbs or natural remedies; they are naturally-occurring elements (from plants) that when ingested, provide cognitive enhancing effects.

The effects of natural nootropics vary greatly, and by and large, users have vastly different experiences with each and every one. Some claim theyre straight placebo, whereas others think that they can be even more potent than their human-made counterparts. However, the general consensus is that theyre less potent than synthetic nootropics are.

This shouldnt turn you off to them as a whole. Although less potent, some natural nootropics provide benefits in some way, shape, or form that synthetic ones cant match. Generall speaking, because natural nootropics are (by definition) from nature, they are often available at a cheaper price than synthetic nootropics are. No laboratories, purity tests, etc. are needed.

Bacopi Monneri is one of the most prevalent natural nootropics. It acts as a memory and anxiety aid, but effects usually take 6-8 weeks to kick in this is a great example of natural nootropics being less potent than a synthetic memory or anxiety aid that might take effect within just a couple of days, or even immediately. Its also a great example of how one can work in a way that its synthetic counterpart cant while anti-anxiety nootropics are usually borderline sedative, users report that Bacopi Monneri works in the background so that you dont feel like youre under the influence.

Other popular natural nootropics are Huperzine-A, and Gingko Biloba. If youre interested in nootropics but arent a fan of the ones produced in laboratories, these three are great jumping-off points.

Smart Drugs

Smart drugs are where the border between nootropic and drug is tested; some consider smart drugs to be nootropics, whereas others think that they should be heavily regulated just as prescription medications are.

Modafinil is the best example of a smart drug. Its prescribed in some countries, banned in some, and completely legal in others. It promises a full-blown energy increase similar to adderall, but without the euphoria or other side effects.

Many people think that smart drugs like modafinil arent nootropics because of how they affect you. If you take a standard nootropic like piracetam for a month straight and then abruptly stop, you might notice the nootropic not being present, but you wont have any real side effects. On the other hand, dosing a smart drug like modafinil on a consistent basis and then suddenly stopping might lead to insomnia, lack of focus, etc.

Were not saying that smart drugs are bad, necessarily. Were just saying that you shouldnt expect a subtle effect like other nootropics give you. When you take one, youll easily notice the effects, and when you come off of it, youll easily notice that you arent on it.

Vitamin B & Vitamin B Derivatives

B vitamins are unique in how they affect us. One of the most popular energy drinks, 5 Hour Energy, has vitamin B6 as its main ingredient (albeit 10,000x the RDA) because of the energy boost that it gives to us.

Naturally, with such effects, B vitamins are being explored as nootropics. Its important to note that vitamin B derivatives arent the same thing as B vitamins;theyve been modified in some way to become something other than the naturally-occurring vitamin.As of 2015, vitamin B derivatives are relatively new. Sulbutiamine is a derivative of vitamin B1 that was originally developed by the Japanese to combat fatigue, and it has the largest user base out of all of them. Picamillion is also a B derived nootropic as it combines niacin (B3) with GABA . More research is needed to conclude anything about B vitamins, but if youve had success from taking a B-complex or an energy drink like 5 Hour Energy, theyre worth exploring.


Ampakides are generally seen as piracetam was in the 80s and 90s interesting, but not researched a whole lot. Actually, out of all of the different types of nootropics, ampakides have the least research done on them.

They appear to work by antagonizing the AMPA and NDMA receptors in your body; this in turn leads to an uptick in glutamate available for your brain to use. Glutamate is said to increase memory span and focus abilities. But again, there hasnt been a whole lot of research done on ampakides or how they will affect you in the long-term.Only use ampakides if youre an explorer and willing to ingest something that hasnt been fully studied.


Peptides are interesting in that they operate similarly to racetams, but arent the same thing. There arent a whole lot on the market today aside from noopept.

Noopept has quickly earned a reputation for being 1,000x more potent than piracetam while having similar effects. This means that the dosage is a lot smaller whereas you need 1.6g to 4.8g of piracetam per day, you only need 10mg to 40mg of noopept per day.

Although not as popular as racetams, peptides are worth exploring. Many users report similar effects as racetams, but not identical. Some like peptides more, whereas others stick with racetams. If you dont like what you feel from a certain racetam, its worth exploring peptides.


Many companies have jumped on the nootropic bandwagon and created nootropic blends. These blends are just a bunch of nootropics combined into a single pill, which is similar to stacking nootropics all on your own just easier.

Its important to take a look at the ingredients of each blend that youre considering. Sometimes, there will be ingredients that arent nootropics, and other times, there will be a blend of ingredients that you could easily concoct yourself for a fraction of the price. Often times they dont contain proper dosages of the ingredients to make them worthwhile.

The most popular nootropic blend is Alpha Brain from Onnit; you can check out our Alpha Brain full review and analysis here. By and large, people see success with this blend, but a lot of marketing is put into it its hard to get unbiased information when you look online. Wed recommend starting with pure nootropics first, and if you find one that you like, possibly getting a blend that has your choice nootropic as the #1 ingredient. If theres something we missed, please let us know so that we can bring our customers the most relevant information possible.

In a follow up blog post we will introduce you to the best nootropics for beginners, and from there we will cover some popular combinations of the individual nootropics in our post on the best nootropic stacks.

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What is a Nootropic – What are nootropics?

Ranking the best nootropics of 2019 – BodyNutrition

Many deep thinkers, CEOs and people of mastery are taking nootropics, commonly known as smart drugs, for increased brain function.

(This is your ability to learn, focus, remember things, and solve complex problems)

From Joe Rogan to Tim Ferriss, smart drugs were being talked about years ago before recently hitting mainstream.

Nootropics work, but you got to be careful.

Since nootropics are such a hot topic right now, it can be hard to separate whats legit and whats whack.

Our research team looked at the scientific research in-depth to find the best nootropics on the market right now.

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OptiMind provides the best balance among proven nootropic ingredients. It balances a moderate dose of vitamin D with a heavy dose of vitamin B12, and several key nootropic supplements, including L-tyrosine, bacopa extract, caffeine, ALA, and vinpocetine, to name just a few. The dosages are on-point and there arent any extraneous ingredients, making OptiMind come out number one.

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The widely-known nootropic supplement from Onnit, made famous in part thanks to Joe Rogans ringing endorsement, fares well thanks to the strong results from a clinical trial conducted at the Boston Center for Memory and published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal in 2016 (1).

Alpha Brains blend of supplements seems particularly effective at boosting verbal skills, so its great if you need to read or write a lot.

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NeuroIgnite contains high doses of several powerful nootropic supplements, and moreover, the label actually tells you how much of each extract is in the supplement, unlike other companies who hide the specifics of their blend under the veil of a proprietary blend.

The heavy hitters in this blend are bacopa monnieri, DMAE, and ginkgo biloba, all heavily-researched supplements with evidence for nootropic effects.

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Zhou Nutritions Neuro-Peak is an immensely popular nootropic supplement that includes a massive dose of vitamin B12 and a slew of herbal extracts. Rhodiola rosea extract is one of the distinguishing factors in Neuro-Peak; this herbal extract appears to be effective at staving off mental fatigue.

Because of this, Neuro-Peak is a good choice if youre faced with a long stretch of continuous, mentally challenging work to do.

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We Are Fits Neuro Spark goes heavy on the St. Johns wort and ginkgo biloba, but includes some of the newer nootropic supplements like vinpocetine, bacopa monnieri, and huperzine-A as well.

Its a well-balanced, stimulant-free nootropic thats well-suited for boosting your performance at any cognitively challenging task.

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Ciltep by Natural Stacks is a little unusualit doesnt follow the lead of the more popular nootropic supplements. It chooses to include unconventional nootropic compounds like artichoke extract and forskolin extract (better known for its use as a weight loss supplement).

As you might guess, theres far less research on the cognitive enhancement properties of these supplements, but if normal nootropics arent doing it for you, Ciltep might be worth a shot.

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TruBrain focuses on delivering amino acids, plus the tried and true caffeine (only 100 mg per shot) and magnesium to achieve its nootropic effects. This approach is more about providing your brain with the natural building blocks it needs to function properly, versus trying to boost its function above its natural level. If you want more of a tune up than an upgrade, TruBrain is a good choice.

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Neovictas Clarity supplement is firmly in the kitchen sink camp, which is to say that it includes just about everything that might affect cognitive function. Its got vitamins, minerals, supplements, extracts, and synthetic compounds.

This betrays a lack of an overarching strategy when it comes to boosting cognitive function, but if you just want to cover your bases, its not a bad choice.

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Brain Boost is essentially a multivitamin along with several herbal extracts that affect biological processes related to cognitive function. Its purpose to to make sure your body is fueled up with the right micronutrients and biological precursors to function at its best.

Unfortunately, because its nootropic ingredients are part of a proprietary blend, its impossible to see how much of each ingredient is present in the supplement.

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NeuroFit is another nootropic that goes heavy on the vitamins and minerals, but is secretive about the amounts of the actual nootropic ingredients in its formulation. With so many ingredients, it seems unlikely that the active ingredients are present in high concentrations.

Nootropics are supplements that are designed to boost cognitive functionthat is, enhance your brains ability to learn, remember, and solve problems.

Though they are extremely popular among students, nootropics have a much broader appeal. Just about anybody in a complex job wants the ability to work faster and more effectively, and people who are getting older like the appeal of staving off brain fog and some of the cognitive decline that comes along with aging.

When a supplement claims to impact cognitive function, its a fairly easy claim to test.

Unlike other supplements that claim to boost well-being or promote a healthy immune system, testing cognitive function is straightforward: you get a group of subjects, give them the supplement in question or a placebo, then subject them to a battery of psychometric tests to assess their cognitive function.

There are a variety of types of these kinds of tests, and different supplements seem to affect different aspects of cognitive function. Some seem to boost memory, while others influence verbal abilities or help reduce mental fatigue (the diminishing of cognitive performance after long, challenging efforts).

A good case study in how testing nootropics work can be observed in the 2016 study that validated the effects of Alpha Brain (2).

Researchers split a group of volunteers into two groups, one of which was given Alpha Brain, and the other of which was given a placebo supplement. Both groups were tested for their cognitive abilities at the outset of the study, then took their assigned supplement for six weeks before being tested again.

The psychometric battery of tests used in the study included visual, spatial, logical, and verbal reasoning and memory. The results showed no improvement in most metrics, but a statistically significant increase in verbal memory.

Other supplements have been studied on an individual level to identify potential nootropic benefits. As you might guess, the most popular ingredients among the top-ranked nootropic supplements are also among the best-studied and most effective.

Bacopa monnieri, for example, is an herbal extract thats been demonstrated to have specific cognitive enhancing effects. A 2001 study in the scientific journal Psychopharmacology conducted a similar protocol to the Alpha Brain studya group of healthy adult subjects were given a 300 mg dose of bacopa monnieri extract or a placebo for twelve weeks, and were subjected to a battery of cognitive tests before and after the supplementation period (3).

In this case, the researchers found that the bacopa supplement increased the speed of visual information processing, learning rate, and memory consolidation.

Ginkgo biloba and vinpocetine looks to be an effective supplement when it comes to speeding up your short-term working memory.

A study published in the journal Human Psychopharmacology used a similar placebo-controlled experiment to study the effects of a combination of ginkgo biloba and vinpocetine on cognitive function, and found that the supplement combination increased the speed at which your working memory functions after being taken for two weeks (4).

When looking at nootropic supplements, youll have to think specifically about what kind of cognitive enhancement you are looking for.

When working on a major writing project, or attempting to work through a lot of reading material, taking something like Alpha Brain that increases verbal memory is could be very helpful.

On the other hand, something that improves visual information processing and learning rate, like bacopa monnieri extract, would likely speed your ability to learn math flash cards or process on-screen visual information.

If you were doing data entry, you might want something to improve short-term working memory, like ginkgo biloba and vinpocetine.

Its clear that taking the time to analyze the specific cognitive demands of the task in question will help immensely when you are deciding what the ideal nootropic supplement is for you.

Other nootropic supplements were studied initially to help with cognitive decline and dementia in the elderly, but have been hypothesized to be effective as well in healthy people.

One example of this is the herbal supplement huperzine-A. Early research found that it had a strong anti-dementia effect. A 1999 experiment described using a huperzine-A supplement to reverse natural dementia in elderly monkeys, as well as reversing chemically-induced cognitive decline in young monkeys (5).

Research into whether it can be used to actually boost cognitive performance in healthy humans is still lacking, but this hasnt stopped people from betting that it will.

An entirely different strategy in nootropics is simply providing your brain with extra building blocks to use in the process of synthesizing neurotransmitters, which are chemicals your brain uses to think. Many nootropics simply provide high doses of the amino acids that are associated with cognitive function.

These are less well-studied, perhaps because simply keeping your brains amino acid reserved topped off isnt as exciting as artificially enhancing its performance, but its nevertheless a strategically sound approach.

Since nootropic supplements are so new, their side effect profile is not well-studied. So far, there have been no major adverse side effects reported that are associated with the ingredients used in the best and most popular nootropic supplements.

In this regard they appear to have a safer safety profile than other categories of multi-ingredient supplements, like weight loss supplements.

The one caveat to this applies to nootropic supplements that contain caffeine. While caffeine is one of the best-studied and most effective cognitive enhancement supplements (as every coffee addict knows), it can cause side effects like jitters and nausea in people who are sensitive to it.

Further, taking it at night is a bad idea, thanks to caffeines ability to act as a stimulantunless, of course, you are trying to stay up all night. Theres nothing wrong with caffeine in a nootropic supplement, but make sure you know how many milligrams each serving contains.

Only a small number of nootropics have established effective doses, and these are mostly derived from the dosages chosen in scientific studies that examined the supplement in question.

Bacopa monnieri, for example, appears to be effective at doses of 300 mg, and ginkgo biloba extract can be effective at doses as low as 40 mg.

Vinpocetine seems to require doses of 30 to 60 mg, but this comes from scientific literature using it to study cognitive decline and dementia in the elderly, so its not clear if boosting brain function in healthy people can be accomplished with a lower dose.

DMAEs studied dosage range is typically about 100 mg, but this seems to come from studies looking at its use to induce lucid dreaming!

Clearly, more work is needed to establish optimal doses for nootropic supplements, but looking for dosages close to these guidelines is at least a good place to start.

Nootropics are a new field of supplementation, but there is fairly strong evidence emerging that a number of different supplements can positively affect your cognitive functioning.

Each seems to serve a slightly different purpose, so think about the cognitive demands in your life before you choose a nootropic supplement. Once you know the kinds of problems you want to solve, make sure your supplement of choice has dosages of the major nootropic compounds you want that are at least close to the range studied in the scientific literature.

When done with care, nootropics appear to be a safe and effective way to increase your brain power and help you work faster, smarter, and more effectively.

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Ranking the best nootropics of 2019 – BodyNutrition

Top 5 Brain Supplements – Brain Center

Product Claims

NeuroFuse came in a close second. It had the right idea to provide the wide range of ingredients it did in their formula. They included some key ingredients including Bacopa Monnieri, Huperzine A, Vinpocetine and also included a good Vitamin B blend. We did note that they include caffeine, but it is unclear from which source this is from.

We did note a significant warning with this product, namely that the caffeine it contains may cause a negative impact, mainly that some users may experience the jitters. Their dosage suggests that one can take up to 6 pills a day, which we felt was too many. These issues made us a little wary of the product, even though they seem to know the right ingredients to include.

We felt that NeuroFuse was pretty much on par with other similar products. We were happy to see that this supplier offers a money-back guarantee. However, we didn’t really like the 14-day trial offer they promote. On the surface it seems good, however, our experience on these matters suggests that if consumers are not happy with the product, cancelling subscriptions can be a nightmare. We much prefer a simple clear money-back guarantee, it’s safer for consumers.

NeuroFuse was almost there with a top quality product but we felt that there were several key elements missing. It does contain a lot of the top natural ingredients for cognitive energy enhancement. However, the fact that their money-back guarantee is not apparent and that they are baiting customers in using a 14-day free trial offer, made us slightly wary. If they addressed these issues, we felt that this could have been a winner!

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Top 5 Brain Supplements – Brain Center

Anti-Aging Drug That Kills Old Cells Passes First Human Trial

A new anti-aging drug combination just completed its first trial in humans, and the volunteers showed signs of improved well being.

Cleaning House

Not all damaged cells die. Some stick around as senescent cells, unable to divide but still able to produce chemical signals — and they could play a major role in the battle against aging.

“It is thought that these cells and the substances they produce are involved in the process of aging,” longevity researcher Nicolas Musi from the University of Texas at Austin told MIT Technology Review. “The idea is that removing these cells may be beneficial to promote healthy aging and also to prevent diseases of aging.”

Based on the results of a very early trial, there may be something to that theory.

Doubled Up

In January, Musi and his colleagues published the results of a trial in which they treated 14 patients suffering from the fatal lung condition idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) with a drug combination they believed would clear out senescent cells.

Over the course of three weeks, the patients took nine doses of a leukemia drug called dasatinib and quercetin, a supplement. By the end of the trial, the patients were reportedly able to walk farther than they could previously in the same amount of time and other signs of improved well being — all without any serious side effects.

“Though small, this pilot study marks a major breakthrough in how we treat age-related diseases such as IPF,” researcher Jamie Justice said in a press release. “Here, we’ve therapeutically targeted a fundamental biological hallmark of aging that is implicated in IPF, and we show early but promising results for the first time in human patients.”

Next Steps

Right now, it’s hard to say whether the drug combo would actually prove effective as an anti-aging therapy, but the researchers are committed to finding out. They’re already testing the treatment on a group of 15 more lung patients, as well as 20 people suffering from chronic kidney disease.

“If we see effectiveness signals and don’t encounter really bad side effects, we’ll try to get to people with less and less life-threatening conditions,” researcher James Kirkland told MIT Technology Review. “If everything goes right.”

READ MORE: A Cell-Killing Strategy to Slow Aging Passed Its First Test This Year [MIT Technology Review]

More on anti-aging: The Quest for Immortality Could Create Two “Classes of Humans”

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China Is Building a Solar Power Station in Space

Chinese scientists recently announced plans to build and launch a solar power plant that would float in outer space and beam electricity down.

Front Row Seats

China’s Academy of Space Technology is working on an orbital power plant that would capture solar energy in space and beam it back to Earth. The plant would be able to harness solar power even when it’s cloudy back on Earth, since its photovoltaic array would be floating high above any terrestrial weather.

With plans to launch a test facility before 2025, pursuing space-based clean energy shows that China is committed to its ongoing push towards using more renewable energy and asserting its place among global leaders in space.

Beam Me Down

Needless to say, the biggest problem for a floating power plant is figuring out how to get the energy back down to Earth.

The scientists behind the project are still sorting that part out. But right now, the plan is to have solar arrays in space capture light from the sun and then beam electricity down to a facility on Earth in the form of a microwave or a laser, according to The Sydney Morning Herald.

From there, the electricity could be used just as if it had been generated by conventional, terrestrial means.

Big Plans

If the launch goes well and the energy-transmitting beam works like it’s supposed to, the Chinese scientists have plans to test and launch bigger and more powerful facilities through 2050, according to The Sydney Morning Herald.

And aside from sending clean energy to Earth, the power plant could also feasibly power missions deeper and farther into space, as long as the beam is precise enough to target any ships that are rocketing away to explore the cosmos.

READ MORE: Plans for first Chinese solar power station in space revealed [The Sydney Morning Herald]

More on power plants in space: NASA Wants to Collect Solar Power Directly From Space

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Watch This Epic “Trailer” for the Commercial Lunar Space Station

The Gateway Foundation showed off its latest vision of the future: the Von Braun Rotating Space Station.

Rotating Space Station

Welcome on board the Von Braun Rotating Space Station.

At least, that’s what the Gateway Foundation is envisioning. Dreamed up by former pilot John Blincow and retired Jet Propulsion Laboratory mission architect Tom Spilker, the station would allow for both low-gravity scientific experiments conducted by national space agencies and space tourism.

In a slick new video posted to YouTube, the Foundation shows off its ambitious plans — including a render of a Hilton space hotel module.

Big Dreams

The Spaceport is a futuristic vision of what it would be like to visit a massive off world spaceport — even if you’re just headed up for a brief holiday to space.

“It will allow us to take our first steps toward colonizing the Moon, Mars, and ultimately, will usher in a new age of exploration as we travel throughout our solar system and discover what lies beyond,” reads the Foundation’s official website.

Since it rotates, the Gateway can simulate varying degrees of gravity. For instance, a Hub that houses administration, storage, and other important elements of the spaceport could simulate lunar gravity for both tourists and scientific purposes. Five gates form a transport hub allowing shuttles from Earth or the Moon to dock to the Gateway.


But will it ever be built? The Foundation is offering a Gateway “membership” as part of a lottery system.

In return for a yearly contribution — there is a free basic tier — the Foundation is offering up “informative emails,” “event discounts,” and a chance to win a free trip to the Gateway. At least, that’s if it ever gets built.

It’s an extremely ambitious project that is going to require astronomical amounts of funding to ever stand a chance of being built. But it also shows how passionate people are to finally get a chance to travel to space during their lifetime.

READ MORE: SpaceX Starship and The Von Braun Rotating Space Station [YouTube]

More on space gateways: NASA Wants Its Deep Space Gateway Habitat To Orbit The Moon By 2024

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Tesla’s Anti-ICEing System Just Got an Upgrade

ICEd Out

In early January, news broke that certain drivers of internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles were blocking electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, an act known as ICEing, seemingly as some sort of protest against the vehicles.

Within weeks, Tesla proposed a solution, and now — as is the Tesla way — the company is already rolling out an update to it.

Automatic Unlocks

In mid-January, Tesla drivers in China began spotting strange-looking devices at Supercharger stations. They appeared to be small hurdles of sorts that, when in an upright position, would prevent a car from parking in front of a Supercharger. Each sported a QR code that a Tesla driver could scan to lower the hurdle, thereby unlocking the space.

On Thursday, Electrek reported that the Tesla Owners club in Taiwan posted information on an updated version of the devices to Twitter. Now, instead of a driver using the QR code to lower the hurdle, they simply back their car toward it. A camera on the device reads the car’s license plate, and the space unlocks automatically.

No word on when, or even if, the devices will make their way to the U.S. But if American drivers continue to report issues with others ICEing them out of Supercharger spots, it certainly wouldn’t be outside the realm of possibility — maybe Tesla will even find another way to update the devices by then.

View from inside car pic.twitter.com/fpTqbIPcfS

— Tesla Owners Taiwan (@TeslaOwnersTwn) February 14, 2019

READ MORE: Tesla Tests New Innovative Way to Avoid Gas Cars ‘ICEing’ Superchargers [Electrek]

More on ICEing: Tesla Found a Clever Way to Prevent Supercharger ICEing

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A Philosopher Is Trying to Figure out What Black Holes Really Are

A philosopher wanted to unify the various field-specific definitions physicists have for black holes. He decided that the variety was good for science.

Converging Theories

Black holes remain mysterious. It was huge news, back in October, when astronomers did as little as actually confirming that there’s a supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy.

But it turns out that scientists very rarely agree about black holes on a philosophical level — they often can’t even agree what they are.

Words Matter

That’s the conclusion of an investigation by Erik Curiel, a philosopher and physicist from Harvard and the Munich Center for Mathematical Philosophy at Germany’s Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, according to new research he published last month in the journal Nature Astronomy.

“The properties of black holes are the subject of investigations in a range of subdisciplines of physics — in optical physics, in quantum physics and of course in astrophysics,” Curiel said in a university-published press release. “But each of these specialties approaches the problem with its own specific set of theoretical concepts.”

Conflict Resolution

Many of the black hole definitions Curiel gathered from various physicists conflicted with one another. An astrophysicist told him that “a black hole is the ultimate prison: once you check in, you can never get out.” On the other hand, a theoretical physicist said that it’s “conceptually problematical to think of black holes as objects in space, things that can move and be pushed around.”

Curiel embarked on this journey to point out the problem of having multiple, incongruous definitions for a single concept, but eventually came around to the discrepancy, arguing that scientists defining black holes according to their specific fields allowed them to do better work.

“I conclude that, within reasonable bounds, the profusion of different definitions is in fact a virtue, making the investigation of black holes possible and fruitful in all the many different kinds of problems about them that physicists consider,” Curiel wrote in his research paper, “although one must take care in trying to translate results between fields.”

READ MORE: Philosophy: What exactly is a black hole? [Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München newsroom via ScienceDaily]

More on scientific definitions: Artificial Consciousness: How To Give A Robot A Soul

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CRISPR Could Make You Immune to the Flu

Researchers in Seattle, Washington developed a new technique to artificially create antibodies by editing the DNA of so-called B cells.

Flu Vaccine

Vaccines for bacterial and viral infections are extremely difficult to develop. But thanks to gene-editing, we could soon be able to make people immune to the flu or even HIV.

Researchers at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, Washington developed a new technique to artificially create improved and longer-lasting antibodies by editing the DNA of so-called B cells — the immune system’s white blood cells responsible for creating antibodies.

Donor B Cells

The technique could eventually allow healthcare professionals to pass a major hurdle: many conventional antibody treatments are only effective for a short period of time — antibodies tend to break down quickly, requiring additional injections later down the line. In contrast, scientists believe that these new antibodies could one day only need to be injected once.

According to a preprint of the research published in the journal bioRxiv earlier this month, an initial trial involving 15 mice delivered promising results: 82 days of protection against the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) — a respiratory tract infection that can prove dangerous to both children and adults.

A Growing Trend

Editing the DNA of B cells is a rapidly growing trend, New Scientist points out. Multiple research teams are in a race to become the first to test the technique in human trials.

Scientists will have to prove the technique is safe first — and that will likely take a number of years. But if it ever does become a treatment for humans, “thousands of hospital visits, disabilities, and deaths could be prevented each year,” reads the preprint.

READ MORE: CRISPR could help us protect ourselves from viruses like flu and HIV [New Scientist]

More on CRISPR: Tiny New CRISPR Protein Could Make Human Gene-Hacking Less Risky

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Scientist Defends Controversial Cloning of Gene-Edited Monkeys

Hung-Chun Chang, the scientist who created five monkey clones of a gene-edited animal, defends his research in an interview with New Scientist.

Primate Problem

In January, we reported on a controversial video featuring five newborn monkeys, all of which are clones of a single monkey genetically engineered with CRISPR to cause problems with its circadian rhythms. The monkey clones are clearly not well, exhibiting signs of anxiety, depression, and schizophrenia-like behaviors.

Some in the scientific community questioned whether the research was ethical, and now the lead scientist behind the study is defending his work — which he suggests will cost fewer monkeys their lives than standard research methods.

Cloning and CRISPR

In a new interview with New Scientist, Hung-Chun Chang of the Institute of Neuroscience in Shanghai notes that cynomolgus monkeys, the kind used for his team’s study, are the most commonly used primate model for research. It’s legal everywhere in the world, he said, to edit the species’ genes.

Given those two points, researchers might actually be able to subject far fewer monkeys to testing if they can reliably gene edit and then clone them.

“Every year, thousands of monkeys are subject to drug testing,” Chang told New Scientist. “And because of the genetic variations among individuals, we need to repeat the testing in many monkeys for meaningful results. That’s why we chose to do cloning: with completely identical monkeys, we can use fewer of them.”

Making Mistakes

If the scientific community is going to agree that testing on these monkeys is ethical, there is some logic behind the idea of gene-editing and cloning the animals to be identical models for specific tests.

However, a key part of that will be ensuring we can effectively edit and clone the animals, and we might not be there yet. Dozens of surrogate mothers underwent embryo implantations as part of Chang’s team’s research, but of the 16 that became pregnant, only five monkeys were born.

We’re going to need to answer many tough questions along the path to a future in which CRISPR helps humanity eradicate disease, end hunger, or even colonize the universe — and whether or not the failures preceding the creation of these five monkeys crossed the ethical line is one of them.

READ MORE: Meet the Man Who Made CRISPR Monkey Clones to Study Depression [New Scientist]

More on the monkeys: Chinese Scientists Cloned Gene-Edited Monkeys With Horrifying Results

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Scientists May Have Finally Found the Universe’s Missing Matter

Surveys of all the matter in the universe missed about a third of what was predicted by calculations. Scientists may have finally found the missing stash.


When scientists calculate how much matter ought to exist in the universe, their estimates always vastly exceeded the amount of matter that they’ve actually accounted for.

The consensus, in fact, is that we’re missing about a third of the matter that should be out there.

But thanks to a new technique for scanning the cosmos, scientists think they may have finally spotted all that missing starstuff.


For clarity, this research has nothing to do with dark matter, the invisible substance that makes up about 85 percent of the matter in the universe. Rather, the team of astronomers from Harvard and Hungary’s Eötvös University found the missing luminous matter, which makes up all of the stars, planets, and other celestial objects in the universe.

According to newly-publicized research, a draft of which was first published to the preprint server ArXiv in December, the scientists used NASA’s orbital Chandra X-Ray Observatory to scan for clouds of space gas surrounding a distant black hole. In those clouds, they found previously-unaccounted-for masses of oxygen. Extrapolating to the amount of similar gas clusters that are out there, the astronomers think that they can account for the entire difference between calculations and observations of the universe.

“We were thrilled that we were able to track down some of this missing matter” said Randall Smith, an astronomer from the Harvard & Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) who worked on the study, in a new press release. “In the future we can apply this same method to other quasar data to confirm that this long-standing mystery has at last been cracked.”

Secret Stash

More study is needed to confirm that these new findings can actually justify the lofty extrapolation that the scientists make in their paper. But if this work holds up, it means that scientists have finally sorted out one of the most confusing mysteries of the universe.

“If we find this missing mass, we can solve one of the biggest conundrums in astrophysics,” said CfA astrophysicist Orsolya Kovacs in the same press release. “Where did the universe stash so much of its matter that makes up stuff like stars and planets and us?”

READ MORE: Where is the universe hiding its missing mass? [NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory newsroom via Phys.org]

More on the Chandra Observatory: Here’s Why MIT Scientists Are Watching a Black Hole Devour a Star

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Drones Just Shut Down Another Huge Airport

Dubai International Airport faced a 30-minute shutdown after a drone was spotted nearby, It's the third major airport to face recent drone-related delays.

Brief Delays

A drone sighting has once again shut down a major airport while officials scrambled to figure out what was going on.

This time, the airport in question was Dubai International Airport, one of the largest international airports in the world. After a drone was spotted nearby, the airport suspended all flight activity between 10:13 and 10:45 a.m. local time, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Dubai Airports confirms that operations at Dubai International are back to normal after less than 30 minutes of delay due to unauthorized drone activity.

— Dubai Media Office (@DXBMediaOffice) February 15, 2019

Some Guy

A Dubai official told The WSJ that the drone was operated by “a guy in the desert” but didn’t share many more details.

The half hour delay is the shortest of three major drone-related airport shutdowns in recent months, but still signals that airports haven’t figured out how to deal with the proliferation of inexpensive drones.

Back in December, London’s Gatwick airport canceled about 1,000 flights over a three-day period, and New Jersey’s Newark Liberty International Airport was briefly shut down in January when a drone was spotted over the nearby airport in Teterboro.

Sound the Alarm

Operating a drone without a license in Dubai is illegal, and similar laws have been enacted by the U.S. government.

But apparently all it takes is one guy in the desert to interrupt the world’s largest international airport. So in the meantime, Fortune reports, airports like Gatwick are running drills to minimize delays and interruptions next time a drone sails by.

READ MORE: Drone Scare Grounds Flights at Dubai Airport [The Wall Street Journal]

More on drones: New FAA Rules Could Make Drones Vastly More Annoying

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Watch a Harpoon Attached to a Satellite Spear a Piece of Space Debris

A team of engineers at the University of Surrey launched a 4.9 foot harpoon from a satellite at a piece of space debris to catch it out of the sky.

Harpooning Space Debris

Junk floating around in Earth’s orbit is becoming a big problem. Bits of man-made debris can pose a big threat to satellites circling our planet. But a team of British engineers might have a clever solution.

The team of researchers from the University of Surrey used the RemoveDEBRIS satellite — a satellite specifically designed to eliminate space junk that launched on board a SpaceX Falcon rocket in April 2018 — to launch a harpoon at a (previously set up) piece of test debris at 20 meters a second (44 mph).

“Successful in space demonstration of the harpoon technology is a significant step towards solving the growing issue of space debris,” said Chris Burgess, Harpoon Lead Engineer at Airbus Defence and Space said in a press release.

Caught in a Web

The test is actually the RemoveDEBRIS satellite’s second trick: in September, it successfully deployed a spider-like web  that was meant to grab space junk out of the sky.

The team at the University of Surrey is now preparing for its third and final test: RemoveDEBRIS will inflate a sail that will slowly drag it into Earth’s atmosphere where it will burn up and be destroyed.

READ MORE: Space junk harpooned like whale in orbit-cleanup test [Associated Press]

More on RemoveDEBRIS: UK Researchers Just Deployed a Massive Net to Catch Space Debris

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This AI Can Predict Survival of Ovarian Cancer Patients

Scientists developed a piece of machine learning software that can predict the prognosis of ovarian cancer and at a higher accuracy.

Predicting Outcomes

Figuring out the survival rate of cancer patients relies on a number of tests and it can be difficult for clinicians to determine the prognosis. But a newly developed AI could give them a big leg up.

Scientists at Imperial College London and the University of Melbourne developed a piece of machine learning software that can predict the prognosis of ovarian cancer patients — and at a higher accuracy than conventional methods.

Their research and the results of an initial trial were published in the journal Nature Communications yesterday.

The researchers found that the survival rate of epithelial ovarian cancer was approximately 35-40 percent despite the existence of a number of treatment options. Some 6,000 new cases appear in the UK every year.

But developing a treatment that is personalized to the patient is critical — and the earlier the better.

“Radiomic Prognostic Vector”

The researchers developed a “radiomic prognostic vector” (RPV) — a piece of software that looks at four biological characteristics of tumors including structure, shape, size, and genetic makeup in CT scans — that turned out to be four times as accurate at predicting outcomes when compared to conventional methods in an initial trial that examined samples from 364 women.

The RPV also “reliably identifies” the five percent of patients that normally only have two years to live. By identifying them early on, they could improve prognosis and optimize treatment plans for those patients.

Transforming Healthcare

“Artificial intelligence has the potential to transform the way healthcare is delivered and improve patient outcomes,”  co-author of the study and radiologist at the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust Andrea Rockall said in a press release. “Our software is an example of this and we hope that it can be used as a tool to help clinicians with how to best manage and treat patients with ovarian cancer.”

READ MORE: Artificial intelligence can predict survival of ovarian cancer patients [EurekaAlert]

More on machine learning and cancer: Microsoft Wants to Use AI and Machine Learning to Discover a Cure for Cancer

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