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Int J Psychophysiol. 1999 Oct;34(1):81-7.

Single-dose piracetam effects on global complexity measures of human spontaneous multichannel EEG.

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The KEY Institute for Brain-Mind Research, University Hospital of Psychiatry, Zurich, Switzerland.


Global complexity of 47-channel resting electroencephalogram (EEG) of healthy young volunteers was studied after intake of a single dose of a nootropic drug (piracetam, Nootropil UCB Pharma) in 12 healthy volunteers. Four treatment levels were used: 2.4, 4.8, 9.6 g piracetam and placebo. Brain electric activity was assessed through Global Dimensional Complexity and Global Omega-Complexity as quantitative measures of the complexity of the trajectory of multichannel EEG in state space. After oral ingestion (1-1.5 h), both measures showed significant decreases from placebo to 2.4 g piracetam. In addition, Global Dimensional Complexity showed a significant return to placebo values at 9.6 g piracetam. The results indicate that a single dose of piracetam dose-dependently affects the spontaneous EEG in normal volunteers, showing effects at the lowest treatment level. The decreased EEG complexity is interpreted as increased cooperativity of brain functional processes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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