Vinpocentine belongs to an herbal plant which contains medical properties that is found to be useful in solving health disorders. It is extracted from the seeds of ‘perwinkle plant’.
Vinpocentine is derived from Vincamine, an alkaloid of the plant Vinca minor L which belongs to the periwinkle family. In Europe, Japan, and Mexico, Vinpocentine is used as a pharmaceutical agent to treat cerebrovascular and cognitive disorders whereas in the USA, it is marketed as a dietary supplement. It is considered as a nootropic because it is associated with the mind and helpful for cognitive enhancement. It is know by several other names such as, ethyl apovincaminate, eburnamenine-14-carboxylic acid ethyl ester, 3 alpha, 16 alpha-apovincaminic acid ethyl ester and cavinton.
Mechanism of action
Vinpocentine is transported to the liver via the portal circulation after being absorbed in small intestine. From the liver, it gets distributed to various tissues in the body. The rate of absorption is found to be significantly higher when taken along with the food. The percentage of absorption could be as high as 60% when taken with food as compared to only 7% when taken in an empty stomach. Peak plasma levels are reported within one and half hours of ingestion. A small percentage of unmetabolized Vinpocentine is exerted in the urine.
Ongoing research has been establishing the benefits of Vinpocentine in treating a variety of disorders. Some of such benefits are:
- Improvement in memory and cognitive disorders
- Tackling dementia associated with cognitive disorders and vascular disease
- Helpful in containing menopausal related problems, chronic fatigue syndrome, and stroke/ seizure related disorders
- Handling motion sickness
- Protects the natural functioning of the brain and aids in the retention of mental sharpness
- Works as an anti-inflammatory agent
- Reduces the impact of gastric and neurological toxicity brought on by the excessive consumption of alcohol.
- Protects retina trauma and especially helpful in improving the conditions of retinas damaged by the hepatitis B virus. Is also found useful in improving hearing conditions.
Adverse Reactions and Precautions
Some of the reported adverse reactions are
- Dry mouth
- Facial flushing
- Marginal reduction in systolic and diastolic blood pressure
- Slight reduction in blood glucose
- Transient hypertension and tachycardia
Pregnant women and nursing mothers should avoid Vinpocentine because it can produce allergic reactions, hypersensitivity in some individuals.
Vinpocentine is available both as an individual supplement, as well as in combination with other products. The recommended dosage as a supplement is between 5 and 10 mgs daily. It should always be taken with food to maximize effectiveness. In some, dosages can go up to 20 mgs provided they have taken the consent their physicians. Your physician should be consulted before you start taking Vinpocetine.