Centrophenoxine Review: See Side Effects, Benefits, & Where to Buy

Updated September 5, 2018

Centrophenoxine is one of the oldest and most thoroughly researched nootropics on the market today. In this article we will provide you with a complete guide to Centrophenoxine to help you understand what this drug is, how it works, and the benefits and risks associated with its use.

What is Centrophenoxine?

Centrophenoxine (AKA Meclofenoxate and Meclofenoxate HCl) is a cholinergic compound, meaning that it boosts the levels of choline and acetylcholine in the brain. It’s sold as Lucidril, a prescription medication, as well as an over-the-counter supplement.
This compound is the pCPA (p-chlorophenoxyacetic acid) ester of DMAE (dimethylethanolamine, AKA deanol). DMAE is a compound found naturally in fish, egg yolks, and other foods, while PCPA is a synthetic version of auxins, a plant growth hormone.
Created in 1959 as an anti-aging drug, this supplement is classified as both a neuroprotective and nootropic agent (1).
So what exactly does this mean?
Neuroprotective agents help to protect the brain or spinal cord from damage from a variety of sources, including both trauma and illness.
Nootropic agents do more than just prevent damage – they actually improve the day-to-day functioning of the bran.
While still used to help those suffering from age-related cognitive decline, this drug is now one of the most popular and well-studied nootropics on the market. Its wide array of benefits, which we will review below, are thanks to the effect of DMAE in the brain.

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Centrophenoxine vs DMAE

The active ingredient in Centrophenoxine is DMAE. So why, then, would you take this drug instead of taking DMAE on its own?
DMAE alone does not easily pass through the blood brain barrier. In order to help improve absorption into the brain, this molecule is bound to pCPA. pCPA acts as an absorption enhancer, paving the way for DMAE to enter into the brain. (2)
It’s here, after crossing the blood brain barrier, where this nootropic works much of its magic to optimize your brain’s performance. In fact, in rat brains it was found that meclofenoxate was twice as effective as DMAE at elevating choline levels in the CNS. (5)

A Review of the Benefits

Improves Memory and Cognitive Performance

Meclofenoxate is known as a powerful memory booster, largely thanks to its role as a choline source in the central nervous system. It is through this boost in choline that it enables production of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. (5)
Acetylcholine is known to positively influence memory, cognitive function, and concentration.
Numerous nootropics produce their cognitive effects through the synthesis of acetylcholine. The problem with some of these is that they rely on the choline already in the body, and can exhaust these stores, leading to both negative side effects and a lack of long-term efficacy. This is especially true for those who avoid eating large amounts of animal products as these provide the majority of choline in the human diet.
Centrophenoxine can be used in combination with these nootropics in order to provide a reliable source of choline in what’s known as a nootropic stack. The nootropics known as racetams are some of the most commonly stacked nootropics with this supplement.

Boosts Mental Energy

Centrophenoxine is categorized as a stimulant thanks to increased acetylcholine production and its ability to simulate oxygen consumption and glucose uptake in the brain.
Unlike the jitteriness caused by caffeinated supplements, you’ll feel more of a gentle boost in energy.

Protects the Brain from Damage

When we are exposed to environmental toxins such as air pollution, pesticides, and even unhealthy foods, free radicals form. Over time these free radicals can lead to oxidative damage to the brain. Brain injuries can also lead to oxidative damage.
This damage is thought to play a part in the formation of many age-related neurological conditions, including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.
The active ingredient DMAE is known to protect neurons and other cells from oxidative damage. In fact, Centrophenoxine was found to improve the hindered cognitive performance and short-term memory of rats exposed to toxic aluminum conditions, which causes extensive oxidative damage. (4)

Fights Aging

This supplement has been found to help fight aging and possibly even extend how long we live.
One way in which it works is through the antioxidant abilities described above. Additionally, as we grow older, certain molecules known as lipofuscin build up in the brain and are linked to cognitive decline and health conditions, including Alzheimer’s disease.
Centrophenoxine has been found to reduce lipofuscin accumulation in the brain. (6) It was even found to increase the average lifespan of mice by 27.3%. (3)

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How Does it Work?

When taken orally, a portion of this supplement is broken down into DMAE and pCPA in the liver. At this juncture the DMAE that has been broken down is converted into choline for the body.
Not all of the supplement breaks down into its composite parts. The remainder of the supplement travels through the bloodstream, eventually making it to the blood brain barrier, where it can cross over into the brain.
Thanks to its ability to produce choline for the body, Meclofenoxate has been found to increase the quantity of acetylcholine in the synaptic vesicles. It’s also been found to improve both glucose absorption and oxygen uptake in the brain.
Lastly, the antioxidant abilities protect cells from damage and even reduces lipofuscin buildup.

Side Effects

While generally considered safe and non-toxic, you should not take this supplement if you may become pregnant as DMAE has been found to cause birth-defects.
This supplement is also not meant for those with bipolar disorder or epilepsy.
Other side effects are often mild and include headache, depression, increased blood pressure, constipation, and excitation. These side effects are often thanks to taking too large of a dose. If you experience these side effects, just stop the drug for a few days and when you add it back in take a lesser amount.

Taking it Before Bed

Thanks to its ability to act as a stimulant you will want to avoid taking Centrophenoxine later in the day. It is also possible that its half-life may play a part here as well, however the half-life estimates vary greatly. It is best to take with breakfast or lunch to avoid a sleepless night.

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Centrophenoxine (Meclofenoxate) Dosage as a Nootropic

Many experts recommend starting with a small dosage of 250mg, split into two doses, one in the morning and one in the early afternoon.
Most users take between 300mg and 1,000mg each day, split into two doses. Start slow and build up, noting how you feel and cutting back if you start to experience any unwanted side effects.
When taking this supplement long term, it is a good idea to cycle it: take it for 5 days, skip 2 days, and repeat.
This compound is normally found in capsules and powders and is water soluble. While you don’t have to take it with food, many users report that this was the best way in order to experience fewer side effects and to feel the effects more rapidly.

Reddit and Longecity User Feedback

When combing through Reddit and Longecity you will find a wide array of experiences when taking this nootropic.
Positive experiences ranged from a clean boost in energy to a reduction in anxiety. In addition to the stimulating effects felt, other users reported an increase in focus, learning ability, motivation, and the ability to keep the “mind sharp.”
On the other side, some users report not feeling anything, and even others report feeling depressed or suffering from digestive upset.
One Longecity user found a way to combat the depression found when using the supplement: “The thing about centro is that it definitely builds up to a point that causes me to get depressed. I’ve learned, though, when I feel the onset of depression, I simply stop taking centro for a day or two, and after my mood recovers, I can start taking it again.”
Headaches and heartburn are also fairly common, and some users complain about the taste of the powder. To help with the taste and heartburn, it may be advisable to take with food and in a capsule.
The variety of user experiences demonstrate how differently this supplement can affect individual users. Be sure to start small and build up, tracking how you feel with and without this nootropic.

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Where to Buy the Supplement Centrophenoxine

You can purchase this supplement in either powder or capsule form in the USA, much of the UK, Australia, Canada, and many other countries. Some countries, including Germany, Hungary, and Austria, categorize this compound as a prescription drug rather than a supplement.
It is next to impossible to find this nootropic in brick and mortar retail locations. Luckily you can purchase it online through several trusted vendors, including Pure Nootropics and Nootropics Depot. These vendors consistently offer the best products on the market.
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Centrophenoxine is one of the most studied nootropic supplements on the market. Taken alone as a nootropic it can help to boost memory and focus, increase energy, and improve your ability to learn. It can even help to prevent or even reverse age-related mental decline and help protect your brain from oxidative damage.
For those who are already using other nootropics, Centrophenoxine can be a great addition to ensure the largest benefit from your supplements. It stacks especially well with the racetams via its role as a source of choline.
Thanks to its decades of research and availability on the market, Centrophenoxine is one of the safest, most effective, and least expensive nootropics. This supplement is ideal for those looking to boost performance all while improving overall brain health.


  1. Centrophenoxine https://pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/compound/23615812#section=Top
  2. Evidence for centrophenoxine as a protective drug in aluminum induced behavioral and biochemical alteration in rat brain. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16969689
  3. Effect of dimethylaminoethyl p-chlorophenoxyacetate on the life span of male swiss webster albino mice. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0531556573900247
  4. Evidence for centrophenoxine as a protective drug in aluminium induced behavioural and biochemical alteration in rat brain. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11010-006-9125-7
  5. Increases in choline levels in rat brain elicited by meclofenoxate https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6806676
  6. Effects of centrophenoxine on lipofuscin in the retinal pigment epithelium of old mice. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6410295

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