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Selank is one of the newer Nootropic substances to hit the market in recent years. It is considered to be heptapeptide and an accessory drug or substance which has anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) effects.
This supplement was developed at the Institute of Molecular Genetics of the Russian Academy of Science.
Selank modulates brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF), a protein which impacts long term memory. Selank has a calming, tranquilizing effect, helping combat social anxiety and panic attacks. As a Nootropic, it also makes focusing and concentration easier, especially in the presence of anxiety triggers.
There is quite a buzz about this new drug for a number of potential benefits that could have a wide range of applications and uses. At the present time, Selank has completed stage III clinical trials in Russia and is awaiting the go-ahead for release to human use.
Selank is an analog of the spleen-produced peptide (peptide simply means a string of amino acids connected together) known as Tuftsin. This peptide is also considered to be immunomodulatory, or capable of improving and changing the immune system (for the better).
It is also closely related the prescription drug Semax, which was produced by the same institute and is currently approved for human use in Russia and Ukraine. There are a number of user and researcher reports indicating that Selank is a more effective alternative.
Selank is an Anxiolytic Heptapeptide drug produced by the Institute of Molecular Genetics of the Russian academy of sciences (IMG RAS). It is considered to be an anxiolytic or a substance with anti-anxiety effect.
Selank is a synthetic analog of the endogenously produced peptide Tuftsin and is known to be capable of improving and positively altering the immune system, which classifies Selank as Immunomodulatory.
Semax, another Heptapeptide Nootropic that was also developed by researchers at the IMG RAS, is a drug closely related to Selank that has been approved for human use in both Ukraine and Russia. There have been many reports from researchers and users that indicate that Selank is a more effective alternative than Semax. Selank however, has recently completed stage III clinical trials in Russia and is awaiting to get the green light for release to human use.
One of the first benefits most users will be able to see with Selank is a stabilization and improvement in their overall mood. It leads to feelings of contentment and well-being.
What is even more interesting is that this effect is not sedating, but rather calming. At the same time, most users are able to feel improved mental clarity and overall enhanced cognitive function.
Anyone who is suffering from the condition known as anhedonia may benefit from this Nootropic agent. Anhedonia is a condition where someone is not able to experience pleasure.
Anhedonia is often created through the use of amphetamines or other opioid type drugs which play with the workings of the brain’s pleasure center. Selank has been shown to help restore the proper functioning of this are of the brain, although it should only be considered as one part of a broader treatment plan.
From a purely Nootropic point of view, there are additional benefits as well. This includes helping to reduce anxiety in a number of different forms such as generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, and even Panic Disorder. It also improves the ability to focus and concentrate, increase mental sharpness, reduce mental fatigue, increase memory and learning capacity, and even improve cognitive functioning when in a sleep deficit.
* A study of mice genetically bred to suffer with depression demonstrated Selank’s ability to fight adhedonia and restore pleasure seeking behaviors. Administration of Selank increased sucrose self administration and reduced immobility during a forced swim test.
* One study involving 62 patients with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) sought to compare Selank to a benzodiazepine treatment. 30 patients were treated with Selank, while 32 with benzodiazepines, Remarkably, efficacy for both drugs was similar, however researchers noted Selank carried anti-fatigue effects. Full details on this study are difficult to obtain, as it was conducted in Russia and only the abstract has been indexed in pubmed.
Another study tested the immunomodulatory effects of Selank, given that it’s endogenous “cousin” peptide, tuftsin, is primarily related to immune function. Selank was administered to patients with generalized anxiety disorder for 14 days, after which, it was noted that Selank suppressed IL-6 levels of patients with depression, while leaving healthy control subjects unaffected. T-helper cell (Th1/Th2) cytokines were also modulated in patients with GAD.
* One animal study tested Selank vs saline placebo during a food reward task that involved learning and memory. While specific study details are unclear, as the research was conducted in Russia, the researchers concluded that Selank increased memory consolidation and this was primarily though to occur through a serotonin increase.
An animal study of adult rats showed Selank was able to compensate for hypoxia induced cognitive deficit and the subsequent lowering of serotonin and noradrenaline.
Selank boosts brain health and function in several ways. But two in particular stand out.
1. From a purely pharmacological standpoint, selank mimics a lot of the effects of tuftsin which is the endogenous peptide it is based upon. These effects include the balance of T helper cells and the modulation of the expression of Interleukin-6.
Additionally, there is evidence that suggests selank may modulate the expression of brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF).
2. Selank’s mechanism of action is suspected to be related to the increase of serotonin. Serotonin influence’s appetite, supports a positive mood, and regulates the sleep and wake cycle. It is also well established that a serotonin deficient state can lead to depression, difficulty sleeping, and lack of an appetite.
A study on mice to unveil the effects of Selank on neurotransmitter Monomines and their metabolites showed significant differences in the content of dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine, and in the levels of their hypothalamus, hippocampus, and frontal cortex. Further research supports Selank’s serotonin raising ability.
Selank and Tuftsin were also shown to support serotonin levels despite rats being pre-treated with the serotonin synthesis inhibitor p-Chlorophenylalanine. Serotonin metabolism was enhanced within 30 minutes of Selank administration, however Tuftsin was unable to raise 5-HT levels.
Rodents exposed to 6-Hydroxydopamine, a neurotoxin which damages the Catecholaminergic system, had cognitive processes restored with Selank.
One of the first questions to answer regarding this Nootropic supplement is how exactly does it work. A documented method of action appears to be through the release of endorphins into your system.
This means that the supplement is able to influence the release of a powerful neurotransmitter known as Dopamine. You could even think of it like an internal opiate.
Another method of action is thought to be related to an increase in another neurotransmitter called Serotonin.
This brain chemical has the ability to help regulate mood as well as influencing appetite and even the normal sleep-wake cycles we go through. It is also well-known that deficiencies in these chemicals can lead to depression, lack of appetite, and difficulty sleeping.
From a purely pharmacological standpoint, this supplement simply mimics many of the effects of tuftsin, the drug upon which it is based. This includes modulation of the expression of Interleukin-6 and the balance of T helper cells.
It also influences the concentration of monoamine neurotransmitters and induces the metabolism of Serotonin. There is evidence to suggest that it might modulate the expression of brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF).
The generally accepted daily dosage range is anywhere from between 1-3 mg.
Of course, you should always start with the lowest effective dose and then work your way up, if needed at all, in a very thoughtful, slow, and controlled fashion.
It is also thought that this supplement is very benign and that doses even up to 500 times that of the effective range have been shown to be well tolerated by the human body.