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What is Picamilon?

By Douglas Bonderud
Updated May 17, 2024
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Picamilon is a dietary supplement and nootropic drug. It is a combination of Vitamin B3, also known as niacin, and the neurotransmitter GABA. This supplement is taken orally, typically in powder or tablet form, and is able to cross the blood-brain barrier. Once in the brain, it is hydrolyzed into GABA and niacin.

This compound was originally created in 1961 by the All-Union Scientific Research Institute, which was located in the former Soviet Union. In Russia, this compound is sold as a prescription drug, and is patented by a company that operates in Moscow. It is used there as a treatment for depression and senile psychosis. In the United States, this compound has been approved for sale as a dietary supplement.

The function of picamilon is two-fold, since, when the compound is broken down into its constituent parts in the brain, each one has a different effect. Niacin acts as a vasodilator, which enlarges the blood vessels of the brain. This, in turn, leads to increased blood flow, reduced blood pressure, and is thought to assist in the management of migraine headache pain.

When the second part of the picamilon compound, GABA, is activated in the brain, it is a believed to create a moderate anti-anxiety effect. This is known as an anxiolytic response, and is due to that fact that GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter. GABA limits, rather than encourages, certain brain functions.

Picamilon is considered to be a nootropic compound. These are also known as smart drugs, and are thought to stabelize mental function. For picamilon, and many other nootropic drugs, there is little clinical research that clearly shows their action mechanism. Many people who take picamilon report feeling less anxious and more energized, which is counter-intuitive for anti-anxiety drugs. Most drugs that suppress anxiety reactions also cause feelings of depression or lethargy.

The picamilon typical dose, for a healthy adult, is 100 milligrams (mg), one to three times per day. This compound acts very quickly, as its effects are apparent within an hour, and can last up to six hours. It can have a mildly stimulatory effect, so its use should be avoided before going to bed. The negative side effects of this supplement appear to be fairly limited, but include headaches and nausea. One of the natural results of using the drug is a significantly lowered blood pressure, so it should not be taken with any other vasodilators, especially those prescribed by a doctor.

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