Improve Your Memory Written On Paper Note


David Tomen
David Tomen
11 minute read
Centrophenoxine helps boost cognition & memory and has significant anti-aging benefits preventing and reversing neuronal decay.

Centrophenoxine (Lucidril® or meclofenoxate) is one of the original nootropics. Developed in France in 1959, Centrophenoxine is a combination of DMAE (dimethylethanolamine) and pCPA (parachlorphenoxyacetic acid).

DMAE is an amine naturally produced in small amounts in your brain. Researchers speculate that DMAE may increase acetylcholine (ACh) levels in the brain by inhibiting choline metabolism in peripheral tissues.

By preventing the use of choline by other tissues (including synthesis into acetylcholine), DMAE increases choline levels in the bloodstream.

But DMAE on its own does not easily cross the blood-brain barrier. Combining DMAE with pCPA seems to help this bioavailability issue.

pCPA is a synthetic version of auxins (plant growth hormones). Auxins act like natural growth factor in plants.

Once digested, Centrophenoxine breaks down into DMAE and pCPA in the liver. This combination was found to make DMAE more bioavailable in the body. And helps DMAE cross the blood-brain barrier more readily.

Centrophenoxine helps:

  • Neurotransmitters. Centrophenoxine seems to temporarily boost acetylcholine in the brain.[i] Which could have an effect on cognitive performance and memory.
  • Neuroprotectant. Centrophenoxine reduces lipofuscin in the brain. Lipofuscin is a cellular waste product that accumulates in cells as we age. It’s the same waste product that causes brown liver spots on skin. Centrophenoxine eliminates nearly half of the accumulation of brain lipofuscin in just 8 weeks.
  • Brain Energy. Centrophenoxine improves cerebral blood flow and oxygen in the brain.


Centrophenoxine (meclofenoxate) is one of the original nootropics. And it’s backed by 50 years of research.

Centrophenoxine is sold as the prescription medication Lucidril® in some parts of the world. In other countries like the USA it’s sold as an OTC supplement.


Centrophenoxine is an ester (chemically-derived) compound of DMAE and pCPA. DMAE seems to increase choline levels by preventing uptake of choline in peripheral tissues in the body. Since choline is a precursor to acetylcholine, more choline in your brain may raise acetylcholine levels. pCPA is a synthesized version of a plant growth hormone.

This combination helps DMAE cross the blood-brain barrier more easily than just supplementing with DMAE.

Centrophenoxine may be a good addition to your nootropic stack. It’ll increase your brain energy levels by boosting oxygen flow. It helps flush out dangerous free radicals and cellular waste. And will help improve memory and cognition.

Centrophenoxine increases brain energy

Centrophenoxine vs. DMAE: What’s the Difference?

DMAE is used to make Centrophenoxine. DMAE is found in small amounts in your brain. A good food source of DMAE is fish.

But there is little evidence that DMAE as a supplement actually crosses the blood-brain barrier. And if it provides the brain enough choline needed to make acetylcholine.

Centrophenoxine seems to solve the blood-brain barrier problem. Adding pCPA to DMAE helps DMAE enter your brain. And this combination also seems to be an effective way to boost acetylcholine.

If you’re considering adding DMAE to your stack, Centrophenoxine may be a better alternative.

How does Centrophenoxine Work in the Brain?

Centrophenoxine boosts brain health and function in several ways. But two in particular stand out.

  1. Centrophenoxine helps improve memory.[ii] It does it in part by boosting the enzyme acetylcholinesterase in the brain.[iii] This is the enzyme needed for breaking down acetylcholine once it does its job in the post-synaptic neuron. The choline is then liberated to be taken up by the pre-synaptic neuron where acetylcholine is once again synthesized with the help of Acetyl-CoA and choline acetyltransferase.

Researchers set out to prove this in a clinical trial using lab rats. In this study they compared Centrophenoxine with DMAE. And determined that DMAE was about half as potent as Centrophenoxine in boosting choline and ACh levels.[iv]

Increased acetylcholine activity helps short-term memory, concentration, and learning.

  1. Centrophenoxine takes out the cellular trash. Lipofuscin are more commonly known as age pigments.[v] They show up as “age spots” or “liver spots” on aging skin. And they hide in cells throughout your body. Including your brain, liver, kidneys, heart, adrenals and nerve cells.

Lipofuscin are the product of oxidation of unsaturated fatty acids. They also contain other cellular heavy metal waste like mercury and aluminum.Centrophenoxine removes brain cell waste and lipofuscin

The buildup of this toxic mess is caused by a breakdown of your normal cellular waste disposal function. Centrophenoxine helps remove lipofuscin from brain cells. And from cells throughout your body.

The beneficial effects of Centrophenoxine were observed in several lab studies on older animals. Administration to these animals significantly increased life-span, and it boosted learning ability compared to age-matched controls.[vi]

How Things Go Bad

As we get older, our brain chemistry and energy metabolism changes.

↓ Brain cell membranes degenerate from toxic buildup

↓ Memory, recall, reaction time and mood diminish

↓ Acetylcholine levels decline

All of these age-related changes are contributing factors to the neurodegenerative diseases of aging. Including Alzheimer’s and dementia.

But even if you’re not concerned with anti-aging, Centrophenoxine can help.

Centrophenoxine benefits

Centrophenoxine is one of the oldest and most studied nootropics available today. It was developed in France in 1959. Primarily in the search for Centrophenoxine to the rescuesomething to combat age-related cognitive decline.

Centrophenoxine is a combination of pCPA and DMAE. Some studies show that DMAE may boost acetylcholine levels in the brain by preventing choline uptake in the peripheral system in the body. Thus providing more choline which could be used to synthesize acetylcholine. But there’s very little evidence that it can cross the blood-brain barrier. pCPA seems to solve that transport problem.

Centrophenoxine is water-soluble and quickly enters your brain after you take it. Once in your brain, it boosts signal transmission, and protects neurons.

Centrophenoxine gets to work right away by temporarily boosting acetylcholinesterase in parts of the brain. This enzyme is needed for the synthesis of acetylcholine. And it gets busy clearing cells of free radicals and lipofuscin.

How does Centrophenoxine feel?

Centrophenoxine offers a gentle brain energy boost when you take it first thing in the morning. You’re able to remember things a little easier. Recall when you need it seems effortless.

Some neurohackers report that Centrophenoxine works well stacked with Aniracetam, Noopept, and Piracetam. It may work in part by providing some of the extra acetylcholine racetams demand when you take them.

And if you dose half in the morning, and the other half early afternoon, you should feel a brain energy boost throughout your day.


Centrophenoxine Clinical Research

Centrophenoxine Relieves the Symptoms of ADHD

A prescription form of DMAE called Deanol was used in the 1960’s and 70’s to treat learning and behavioral problems in children. What’s now known as ADHD.

A 3-month, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial involving 74 children was conducted in 1975. They were split into groups and given 40 mg. of Ritalin or 500 mg of Deanol (DMAE). Positive results from this trial showed DMAE comparable to Ritalin in effectiveness in controlling ADHD.[vii]

Centrophenoxine is Anti-Aging

Centrophenoxine is not only an effective cognition booster, it helps reverse the effects of aging in your brain. Much of brain cell membrane is made of phospholipids (fat). And it oxidizes as we age. In other words, free radicals build up. And are not removed from cells efficiently the older we get.

Aging brain cells also get clogged up with lipofuscin. Lipofuscin are the product of oxidation of unsaturated fatty acids. They also contain other cellular heavy metal waste like mercury and aluminum. You see lipofuscin show up as ‘age spots’ on older skin. The same thing happens in your brain.

Studies have shown that Centrophenoxine helps ‘flush out’ free radicals and lipofuscin from brain cells.[viii] And used by younger neurohackers, helps this cellular waste from building up in the first place.[ix]

Researchers in Hungary conducted a double-blind clinical trial with 50 people suffering from dementia. Average age was 77 years. They gave one group 2 grams of Centrophenoxine for 8 weeks.

They found that Centrophenoxine rehydrated ‘intracellular mass’. Proving this compound as a powerful free radical scavenger. It removed free radicals from aging brain cells. And restored them to a healthy state.[x]

In another study in India, researchers worked with male Wistar rats aged 4, 8, 16 and 24 months. They used these ages because they correlate with human aging from young to elderly.

Just like in humans, lipid oxidation and lipofuscin concentration increased with age. The experiment also showed that cellular free radical damage and lipofuscin buildup happened at the same time.

This buildup of cellular waste contributes to age-related decline in neuronal electrical activity (neural signaling). Cognition, memory and learning are all affected. The research team found that Centrophenoxine had no effect on younger rat brains. But in the two older age groups they saw a significant decrease in lipid oxidation and lipofuscin concentration.

Showing conclusively the anti-aging action of Centrophenoxine.[xi]

Centrophenoxine Improves Memory

Centrophenoxine boosts neuronal glucose and oxygen uptake in the brain. And helps the production of RNA and protein. RNA is derived from DNA in the cell nucleus. And enable neurons to form proteins. Which help encode memory and repair damage to brain cells.

Centrophenoxine improves memoryIn one double-blind clinical trial, researchers worked with 50 people suffering from ‘dementias of medium level’. They gave the group 2 grams of Centrophenoxine, or a placebo for 8 weeks. 48% of the group that received Centrophenoxine showed improvements in memory.[xii]

Another study was made of the effects of Centrophenoxine on the learning and memory of old mice. One group of mice were treated for 3 months and the other group received a placebo. The treated animals showed a significant improvement in memory and learning.[xiii]

Centrophenoxine Recommended Dosage

Centrophenoxine dosage is typically 500 mg to 1 gram daily.

If you’re stacking it with a racetam, split your dose. So a 1-gram dose would be 500 mg first thing in the morning, and the other half early afternoon.

Centrophenoxine seems to help increase choline and acetylcholinesterase in the brain. Which is needed for the synthesis for acetylcholine.

But keep this in mind; Centrophenoxine and DMAE are related to choline. They are not the same as choline. Centrophenoxine should not replace a regular choline source like Alpha GPC or CDP-Choline. But Centrophenoxine can be stacked with a choline source.

And yet some neurohackers take Centrophenoxine as a choline source to include in their racetam stack. Or use it as a nootropic on its own. Experiment and see what works best for you. YMMV.

Centrophenoxine Side Effects

Centrophenoxine has been used as a nootropic for nearly 50 years. So it’s safety is well established. It’s non-toxic and should be well tolerated by most neurohackers.

Some reported side effects include stomach upset, body odor, drowsiness, confusion, increased blood pressure, moderate depression, and irritability.[xiv]

If you deal with epilepsy or bipolar disorder you should avoid Centrophenoxine entirely.

Centrophenoxine could cause a boost in acetylcholine. So an excess of acetylcholine could cause the above-mentioned side effects.

Cycling Centrophenoxine with 5 days using it, and a 2-day break should eliminate any acetylcholine toxicity.

Where to buy Centrophenoxine

Centrophenoxine comes in powder form and capsules. Capsules are typically 250 – 400 mg.

I recommend buying Centrophenoxine from because their product is pure and they provide a Certificate of Analysis verifying that purity. Buy Centrophenoxine here: PureNootropics – Centrophenoxine.

Centrophenoxine is water-soluble so it’s not necessary to take it with a fat or oil. You may find it absorbs better or more quickly when taken with food.

Nootropics Expert Recommendation

Centrophenoxine 500 – 1,000 mg per day.

Nootropics Expert Tested and ApprovedWe recommend using Centrophenoxine as a nootropic supplement.

Your body does not make Centrophenoxine on its own. And it’s not available from food. This nootropic is a combination of DMAE and pCPA, and is only available in supplement form.

In some countries Centrophenoxine is prescribed as Lucidril® for treatment of Alzheimer’s or age-related cognitive decline.

Studies show Centrophenoxine helps stop or reverse brain degeneration by clearing out free radicals and lipofuscin from brain cells. Making Centrophenoxine one of the primary anti-aging nootropics.

Centrophenoxine also boosts available choline.  And a few studies show it can at least temporarily increase acetylcholinesterase. The enzyme needed for the synthesis of acetylcholine. Which would boost cognition, memory, recall and learning.

But we do not recommend using Centrophenoxine as your primary source of choline in your nootropic stack. We have much better acetylcholine precursors available to us including Alpha GPC and CDP-Choline.

We suggest starting with a dose of 500 mg daily. Possibly more depending on your racetam usage.

Age-related cognitive disorders like Alzheimer’s may want to up the dose to 2,000 mg per day.

I recommend buying Centrophenoxine from because their product is pure and they provide a Certificate of Analysis verifying that purity. Buy Centrophenoxine here:  PureNootropics – Centrophenoxine.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This post may also contain other affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

[i] Georgiev V., Chavdarov D., Petkov V., Kirilov B. “Effect of centrophenoxine on acetylcholine release in perfused cerebral ventricles of cats under dynamic electrophysiological control.” Acta Physiologica et Pharmacologica Bulgaria. 1979;5(3):59-66. (source)

[ii] Marcer D., Hopkins S.M. “The differential effects of meclofenoxate on memory loss in the elderly.” Age and Ageing. 1977 May;6(2):123-31. (source)

[iii] Sharma D., Singh R. “Centrophenoxine activates acetylcholinesterase activity in hippocampus of aged rats.” Indian Journal of Experimental Biology. 1995 May;33(5):365-8. (source)

[iv] Wood P.L., Péloquin A. “Increases in choline levels in rat brain elicited by meclofenoxate.” Neuropharmacology 1982 Apr;21(4):349-54. (source)

[v] Katz M.L., Robison W.G. Jr. “What is lipofuscin? Defining characteristics and differentiation from other autofluorescent lysosomal storage bodies.” Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics. 2002 May-Jun;34(3):169-84. (source)

[vi] Nandy K., Bourne G.H. “Effect of centrophenoxine on the lipofuscin pigments in the neurones of senile guinea-pigs.” Nature. 1966 Apr 16;210(5033):313-4. (source)

[vii] Lewis J.A., Young R. “Deanol and methylphenidate in minimal brain dysfunction.” Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics. 1975 May;17(5):534-40. (source)

[viii] Roy D., Pathak D.N., Singh R. “Effect of centrophenoxine on the antioxidative enzymes in various regions of the aging rat brain.”Experimental Gerontology. 1983;18(3):185-97. (source)

[ix] Ludwig-Festl M., Gräter B., Bayreuther K. “[Increase in cell metabolism in normal, diploid human glial cells in stationary cell cultures induced by meclofenoxate].” Arzneimittel-forschung. 1983;33(4):495-501. (source)

[x] Fülöp T. Jr., Wórum .I, Csongor J., Leövey A., Szabó T., Pék G., Zs -Nagy I. “Effects of centrophenoxine on body composition and some biochemical parameters of demented elderly people as revealed in a double-blind clinical trial.” Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics. 1990 May-Jun;10(3):239-51. (source)

[xi] Sharma D., Maurya A.K., Singh R. “Age-related decline in multiple unit action potentials of CA3 region of rat hippocampus: correlation with lipid peroxidation and lipofuscin concentration and the effect of centrophenoxine.” Neurobiology of Aging. 1993 Jul-Aug;14(4):319-30. (source)

[xii] Pék G., Fülöp T., Zs-Nagy I. “Gerontopsychological studies using NAI (‘Nürnberger Alters-Inventar’) on patients with organic psychosyndrome (DSM III, Category 1) treated with centrophenoxine in a double blind, comparative, randomized clinical trial.” Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics. 1989 Jul;9(1):17-30. (source)

[xiii] Nandy K. “Centrophenoxine: effects on aging mammalian brain.”Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. 1978 Feb;26(2):74-81. (source)

[xiv] Casey D.E. “Mood alterations during deanol therapy.”Psychopharmacology (Berlin). 1979 Apr 11;62(2):187-91. (source)

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Join The Discussion - 90 comments

October 12, 2023

Is it OK to take Ginko Biloba and Centrophenoxine together? My reason for taking Ginko is to increase blood flow to the brain. But since both supplements are reported to accomplish this, is Centrophenoxe by itself sufficient for this purpose?

    David Tomen
    October 12, 2023

    Matt, they are two very different supplements. Should not be a problem using the together. Gingko Biloba would be far better for increasing cerebral blood flow compared to Centrophenoxine.

April 21, 2023

Hard time finding Centrophenoxine In the UK, the postage or product price sky rockets and there is several companies on google results which looks like scams too. Such a shame after my research.

September 8, 2022

Hi David,

There seem to be some conflicting recommendations here, so I’m just trying to get things clear. You say you don’t recommend taking Centrophenoxine, but this post ends with: We recommend using Centrophenoxine as a nootropic supplement. And you don’t recommend taking DMAE but in some recent replies to comments on another post I see recommendations for DMAE dosages. Are you on the fence about these supplements or is it more that you don’t necessarily feel the need to steer people away from them if they’re already taking them? I just want to make sure what your stance is on these two.

    David Tomen
    September 9, 2022

    Jen, it depends on why you are using DMAE or Centrophenoxine. Some mistakenly use them thinking they are good ways to boost acetylcholine. And they are not the most efficient ways to do that. Better to use Alpha GPC or CDP-Choline if you want to increase acetylcholine.

    But they are good choices for reducing lipofuscin.

    I have reviewed a lot of nootropic supplements on Nootropics Expert. But that does not mean I recommend using them. It depends on your issues and what you are trying to optimize or fix.

      September 13, 2022

      Ok. I thought I may have choline deficiency because of the DMAE, but I guess that’s not possible? I have all the symptoms and have been taking DMAE for years for the lipofuscin, so was a little worried that there might be a connection.

        David Tomen
        September 13, 2022

        Jen, if it feels like you have a choline deficiency why not try CDP-Choline or Alpha GPC a couple times per day for a few days and see how you feel?

        September 16, 2022

        Yes, I was already looking into those because of what I read in your post. I hadn’t even heard of choline before that, but when I started looking into it and saw the symptoms for choline deficiency I noticed I was experiencing a lot of them, then worried it might be because of the DMAE. I should be getting plenty of choline from my food, so not sure if that’s the cause but I’ll try supplementing regardless and see if it helps.

September 5, 2022

Forgive me as I’m just a layperson, but I’m a little confused. In your post on DMAE you wrote that it inhibits choline and metabolism of choline (I indeed found some studies supporting that). I was about to stop taking it (as I was only taking it for the lipofuscin issues because I’m taking L-Carnosine), but then I read this here: “But there is little evidence that DMAE as a supplement actually crosses the blood-brain barrier. And if it provides the brain enough choline needed to make acetylcholine.”

If it can’t even cross the blood-brain barrier, how can it inhibit choline? or is that still entirely possible? And if it inhibits choline, how could it make acetylcholine if it did cross the blood-brain barrier?

    David Tomen
    September 7, 2022

    Kate, choline is used throughout your body. In nearly every single cell. It is used to produce acetylcholine which is your major signaling neurotransmitter. When you stick out your tongue, blink your eyes, wiggle your nose or stick out your leg that signal is due to acetylcholine. The muscle contraction is thanks to dopamine.

    DMAE and Centrophenoxine seems to prevent choline from getting into cells which releases it back into the ‘wild’ and the choline molecule is then available to produce acetylcholine.

    You have other ways to get choline into your brain to produce acetylcholine. Including using Alpha GPC or CDP-Choline along with ALCAR as a cofactor.

      September 9, 2022

      Thank you for explaining. From what I gather then, DMAE is not so much damaging as it is ineffective in this area, although I was only taking it for the lipofuscin build-up. I’m not sure preventing the use of choline by other tissues is a good thing either, so I’ll ditch the DMAE altogether and rely only on ALCAR for the lipofuscin. I’m thinking about ditching L-Carnosine and subsequently ALCAR after I’m done with this batch anyway, so CDP-Choline might be part of my new approach. Thanks again.

        David Tomen
        September 9, 2022

        Kate, I wouldn’t ditch L-Carnosine so fast. Take a look at its benefits again and you may decide to keep using it.

        September 10, 2022

        I’m still debating it; my list of supplements is getting too long at this point and if I keep taking this, it’s also recommended to keep taking ALCAR (and DMAE), so more for the list. I just wish there were some (recent) human studies that didn’t focus on a specific illness/condition. The most promising ones for anti-aging have been on mice and rats, so that’s why I was looking at cutting this one for now. I don’t want to keep taking about 10 different supplements, especially given the fact that once you start taking supplement X, you are usually recommended to also take Y to counterbalance something. But I will give it some more thought. You are actually only one of two in the field (that I could find) who seem to have given it serious attention, so I’m grateful for that at least.

        David Tomen
        September 13, 2022

        Kate, think of the supplements you are using as “food”. Because that is what they are. There was no dietary supplement industry 100 years ago. Why? Because people got what they needed from their diet. Today we can not because it is not there for a variety of reasons. Including soil depletion, nutrients lost during harvest, travel, storage, and processing. Today this is a multi-billion dollar industry.

        I’m personally grateful that these supplements exist. Because otherwise I’d be dead.

Lee Turner
August 25, 2022

Hi David,
Great info! I’ve been searching your website looking for a comment you made and can’t find it. I remember you said not to take alpha-GPC & take citicoline instead. I just can’t remember why.

Rick May
July 25, 2022

Do you purchase your centrophenoxine from China or the USA? I ask, as they are famous for sending 25 Kg of a product in a drum and only the top 5-15% is actually the stated product.

Do you have third party labs that test you products?

    David Tomen
    July 26, 2022

    Rick, I personally do not use Centrophenoxine. Nor do I manufacture supplements.

    But keep in mind a lot of these supplements are manufactured in China. Which is evident with the supply chain problems due to the epidemic and spotty availability of many supplements.

    The key is finding a US company who tests the raw product as it comes into their plant. Tests it during manufacturing. And then tests the final product before it is sold as a supplement.

Raul Corrales
June 16, 2022

what foods are best eaten when supplenting with centrophenoxine?

    David Tomen
    June 19, 2022

    Raul, it doesn’t matter because it is water soluble and will be absorbed anyway. It may work faster when taken with any type of food but can be used on its own.

April 15, 2022

Hi David! Thanks for the work that you do. I find your analysis straight forward and very helpful. I am sorry to hear about your back operation in the comments above, and hope that by now you are feeling better!

My question concerns L Carnosine and the Lipofuscion issue that results from its use. I take L Carnosine daily along with DMAE and ALCAR, per your recommendation. Do you feel that using Centrophenoxine would be a better choice to use for this purpose than DMAE? I take 500 mg of L Carnosine twice a day along with 500 mg of ALCAR. What dose of Centrophenoxine would be appropriate to pair with these two to reduce the Lipofuscion? Do you recommend not taking Centrophenoxine daily under these circumstances? I also take 500 mg of CDP Choline daily along with one of the racetams.

    David Tomen
    April 18, 2022

    Ted, Centrophenoxine is arguably a better option to DMAE and would be used daily. You can tell if it’s working if you avoid age spots on your skin while using L-Carnosine.

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