Cycloserine, chemically known as 4-amino-3-isoxazolidinone is a nootropic drug that is vended under the name Seromycin. It was formerly employed as an antibiotic since it was successful against the tuberculosis causing bacteria known as Mycobacterium tuberculosis. However, a study was conveyed to look at cycloserine and if it has the ability to infiltrate the nervous system. It was discovered to have that ability and since then, a lot of studies have subsequently been carried out to evaluate its effectiveness in treatments of psychiatric disorders.
How does D-cycloserine work?
D-cycloserine works by partially stimulating the N-methyl-D-aspartic acid abbreviated as NMDA. The receptors are located at the base of the basolateral nucleus of the amygdala. These receptors are glutaminergic in nature, and the D-cycloserine influences the glycine binding sites. These sites that are affected by D-cycloserine are important for opening the NMDA channels. When the channels are open, there is an increased neurotransmission that is excitatory. The D-cycloserine, studies have revealed, possess a greater efficacy at the NR1/NR2 receptors, more than even the endogenous agonists such as D-serine and glycine.
Uses of D-cycloserine
D-cycloserine is used to treat a multitude of anxiety disorders. It, however, should be used alongside a cognitive-behavior therapy that is itself exposure based. The disorders are as a culmination of and prolonged by a type of memory known as pathological fear memory. A study conducted in 2006 revealed that there is a much higher decrease in anxiety when D-cycloserine is given an hour prior to the therapy. Furthermore, the D-cycloserine drug can be used to enhance learning. The study was conducted in animals indicated that indeed the animals learning abilities were enhanced after they were administered with D-cycloserine.
D-cycloserine has also been shown to suppress fear. Studies carried out on animals as well as on humans have proven this to be the case. What is even more, those who have used the drug concur that it has the fear suppressing the capacity.
In an even more ground breaking use, D-cycloserine is currently being studied if it has the ability to cure cocaine addiction. Studies have initially been done but with mixed results. The thinking behind this step is that the extinction of addiction to drugs is similar to the extermination of fear. Trials have already been made in animals as well as human models. In the light of the evidence that there were mixed results in studies conducted in 2006 and 2010, more studies are being conducted to determine conclusively if this drug can be used to combat the drug addiction menace.
The side effects
D-cycloserine also has some side-effects apart from its requisite influences. It is essential to perceive that one may need to seek some medical attention in case they experience some of these side effects. According to Drugs.com, D-cycloserine can produce two types of symptoms.
The more common symptoms include: -Anxiety, confusion dizziness, nervousness, muscle twitching or trembling, mental depression, nightmares, speech problems, suicidal thoughts and increased irritability as well as restlessness. On the other hand, the less common ones include seizures; numbness, burning pain, weakness in the hand or feet, or burning pain; and skin rash.
However, it is also vital to say that some of those symptoms do not require medical care. Some of them may go away as your body gets used to the drug. Your physician should also tell you how to scale down some of the unwanted effects or even prevent them totally.
In adults, the recommended dose for D-cycloserine is 500mg per day. It should be administered either in one or two divided dosages. It should nevertheless be reduced or discontinued if a person is experiencing allergic dermatitis or toxicity in the central nervous system. Blood concentrations of above 30mcg/mL are related to toxicity. Moreover, people taking above the recommended 500mg per day should be monitored carefully for toxicity in the central nervous system.
It is always advisable to check with your doctor before using this drug for whatever purpose.