Cortexin: Review of Nootropic Benefits, Uses, Dosage, & Side Effects

Updated on February 29, 2024
 by — reviewed by Jason Williams, PhD (Contributor: George Collins / Editor: Yoko Hill)
Article discussing the cognitive enhancement and brain health benefits of the nootropic Cortexin.

Cortexin®, a new and complex peptide drug, has emerged as a significant agent in the realm of neuroprotection and cerebral enhancement. This neuropeptide, derived from the cerebral cortex of cattle, encapsulates a unique blend of amino acids and polypeptides, contributing to its potent nootropic properties.

As a molecular marvel, Cortexin exhibits a range of neuroprotective and neurotrophic effects, playing a pivotal role in enhancing brain function and mitigating neurological disorders.

We will delve into the intricate data revolving around the molecular mechanisms of Cortexin. Could this be the neuroprotective agent you’ve been looking for to handle ischemic stroke and cognitive disorders?

Whether you’re a healthcare professional or someone considering using Cortexin for personal use, this review provides vital information on the drug Cortexin and its role in enhancing brain health and cognitive function.

What is Cortexin?

Cortexin is a novel nootropic and neuroprotective drug that is primarily used for its positive effect on brain function. The effect of Cortexin boosts cerebral functions and treats various neurological disorders, such as brain ischemia (reduced blood flow to the brain), brain injuries, and epilepsy. It’s also used by doctors in pediatric practice to assist speech development in children.

Geropharm, the manufacturer of original drug Cortexin® in the state register of medicines, and one of the leading nootropic companies, ensures the highest quality and efficacy. This makes Cortexin a widely used treatment in various age groups.

From addressing acute neurological events to chronic cerebral ischemia, Cortexin stands out for its ability to cross the blood-brain barrier effectively, targeting cellular dysfunction and oxidative stress at the molecular level. It is also 2 times stronger than the well-known nootropic Cerebrolysin.(1)

Cortexin is a complex mixture of peptides and amino acids. This medicine is derived from the cerebral cortex of cattle or pigs, which means it is a polypeptide of tissue-specific animal origin. 

Cortexin is thought to work by influencing neurotrophic factors, modulating neuronal excitability, and protecting neurons from damage. Cortexin also has antioxidant properties, helping neutralize harmful free radicals in the brain.(2)

Overall, a treatment using a vial of Cortexin provides neuroprotective effects on pathological processes that help improve cognitive functions, such as memory and learning ability.


  • Boosts mental functions like memory, attention, and learning ability
  • Effective treatment of cognitive impairment
  • Neuroprotective effect prevents the formation of free radicals
  • Helps regulate the nervous system


  • More clinical human studies are needed to fully understand its benefits and limitations
  • Typically administered as an injection and requires adequate pharmacological interaction

Mechanism of Action

The exact molecular mechanism of action of Cortexin is complex and involves multiple pathways. 

Here’s a full analysis of its central mechanisms:

  • Neuroprotection: Cortexin exhibits neuroprotective properties, which means it helps protect nerve cells (neurons) from damage. This is particularly crucial in conditions like ischemic stroke or brain injuries, where neurons are at risk due to factors like lack of oxygen or physical trauma.
  • Modulation of Neurotransmitter Systems: Cortexin influences various neurotransmitter systems in the brain. Neurotransmitters are chemical messengers that facilitate communication between neurons. By modulating these systems, Cortexin can affect processes like learning, memory, and overall brain function.
  • Enhancement of Neurotrophic Factors: Neurotrophic factors are proteins that support the growth, survival, and differentiation of neurons. Cortexin is believed to stimulate the production or activity of these factors, thereby aiding in the maintenance and regeneration of neuronal networks.
  • Antioxidant Effects: Oxidative stress is caused by an imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants in the body, which leads to neuronal damage. Cortexin has antioxidant properties that work in sequence to neutralize free radicals, reducing oxidative stress and its harmful effects on brain cells and nervous cells.
  • Genomic Effects: There is evidence to suggest that Cortexin might influence gene expression related to neuronal function and survival. By altering the expression of certain human gene codes, Cortexin could potentially enhance neuronal excitatory resilience and plasticity.
  • Impact on Synaptic Plasticity: Synaptic plasticity is the ability of synapses (the junctions between neurons) to strengthen or weaken over time. This plasticity is crucial for learning and memory. Cortexin may play a role in modulating synaptic plasticity, thus influencing cognitive functions.
  • Neuronal Excitability and Membrane Stabilization: Cortexin affects neuronal excitability, which is the ability of neurons to fire signals. It might also stabilize neuronal membranes, thus contributing to better neural signal transmission and brain function.
  • Anti-inflammatory Properties: Inflammation in the brain contributes to various neurological conditions. Cortexin has anti-inflammatory effects, helping to reduce inflammation and its negative impact on brain health and cortex cells.
  • Improvement of Cerebral Circulation: Cortexin also plays an important role in enhancing cerebral blood flow in the brain, ensuring that neurons receive adequate oxygen and nutrients necessary for their function, development, and survival.

Nootropic Benefits of Cortexin

Cortexin has a formation of excitatory and inhibitory amino acids that provide nootropic effects. This is attributed to its ability to modulate neurotransmitter systems, protect neurons, and enhance brain function. These properties make it a sought-after treatment for various cognitive and neurological disorders.

Let’s have a look at some of the key benefits of Cortexin.

1. Boosts Memory Function

 Cortexin is believed to enhance memory retention and recall. It may facilitate the processes involved in storing and retrieving information, crucial for learning and memory.(3)

2. Cognitive Enhancement

Cortexin improves overall cognitive abilities, including attention, executive functions, and problem-solving skills, making it useful in the management of cognitive impairments.

3. Neuroprotection

Cortexin’s neuroprotective properties help safeguard neurons from damage, particularly in conditions like ischemic stroke, thus preserving cognitive functions.

This is particularly relevant when psychotropic drugs induce neurotoxicity, either through oxidative stress, disruption of neurotransmitter balance, or other mechanisms. Cortexin’s ability to inhibit the toxic impact of psychotropic agents is an interesting aspect of its pharmacological profile.(4)

4. Stress Reduction

By modulating the stress response, Cortexin helps in reducing the adverse effects of chronic stress on the brain, which can impair cognitive performance.

5. Boosts Brain Health

Cortexin promotes overall brain health by supporting neuronal growth and development, crucial for maintaining cognitive functions. Additionally, Cortexin inhibits cognitive decline and preserves the health of neurons.

6. Enhancement of Neuroplasticity

Cortexin significantly enhances synaptic plasticity, the brain’s ability to adapt and reorganize neural pathways, essential for learning and adapting to new information. This activity helps to support molecular and cellular processes.

This is also beneficial when it comes to Cortexin in the treatment of cognitive impairment in patients with chronic cerebral ischemia, and for effective treatment of ischemic stroke.

7. Mood Regulation

Although primarily a cognitive enhancer, Cortexin also has effects on mood regulation, indirectly supporting cognitive function by improving emotional well-being.

8. Antioxidant Effects

Cortexin’s antioxidant properties help in combating oxidative stress in the brain, which negatively impacts cognitive processes. By promoting the reduction of inflammation, we see the relationship between peptides and neurotrophic cerebral factors as being beneficial to the integrity of neurons and the body’s metabolism.

9. Modulation of Neurotransmitter Systems

Cognitive disorders like ADHD are often associated with imbalances in certain neurotransmitters in the brain, with special attention given to dopamine and norepinephrine. Cortexin might have a modulating effect on neurotransmitter systems, which could potentially influence the symptoms of ADHD.(5)

Uses of Cortexin

Here are some of Cortexin’s primary uses:

  • Cognitive Disorders: Cortexin is often used to improve cognitive functions, such as memory, attention, and learning abilities, especially in conditions where these abilities are compromised due to neurological disorders.
  • Neurological Conditions: It has applications in the treatment of various neurological conditions like ischemic stroke, traumatic brain injuries, and cerebral palsy. Its neuroprotective properties are valuable in minimizing neuronal damage in these conditions.
  • Pediatric Neurology: In pediatric practice, Cortexin can be used for treating developmental delays, including speech and learning difficulties in children. It is thought to support brain development and cognitive function.
  • Cerebral Ischemia: In cases of reduced blood flow to the brain, such as in ischemic stroke, Cortexin may help protect brain tissue from damage and support recovery.
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases: While more research might be needed, Cortexin is sometimes used in the context of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease, for its potential to support neuron health and function.
  • Recovery from Brain Injuries: Cortexin aids in the recovery process following traumatic brain injuries or neurosurgical procedures, helping to restore normal brain function and reduce complications. This includes hemispheric ischemic stroke in the acute and recovery period.(6)
  • Stress and Anxiety: Due to its potential effects on brain function, Cortexin is also used to manage symptoms of stress and anxiety, though this is not its primary indication.
  • Prevention of Cognitive Decline: In some cases, Cortexin is used as a preventive measure against cognitive decline, especially in older adults or individuals at risk of neurodegenerative diseases.
  • Enhancing Neuroplasticity: Cortexin is used to enhance neuroplasticity – the brain’s ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections, which is crucial for learning and recovery from brain injuries.

Where to Buy Cortexin

Your search is over. We are going to save you hours of your life by providing a reliable, trustworthy online retailer for Cortexin.

Geropharm is the only manufacturer of Cortexin, and we have done in-depth research to find

This website provides high-quality Cortexin directly from its source, helping you to receive the best treatment.

Cortexin Dosage

The dosage of Cortexin can vary depending on several factors such as the age of the patient, the specific condition being treated, and individual health considerations.

  • Standard Dosage: For adults, the usual dosage of Cortexin is 10 mg for 10 days. Some users use 10 mg 2 times a day.
  • Administration: It is administered in a vial of 10 ml (or in a 5 ml vial) as an injection into a muscle.

Note: The content of the vial of Cortexin includes a sodium chloride solution, as this nootropic has a complex of water-soluble polypeptide fractions. This water in the injection is necessary for the Cortexin treatment to ensure the molecular partners of Cortexin (complex of low molecular weight neuropeptides) effectively boost the activity of the brain. The sodium chloride itself does not contribute to the therapeutic effects of Cortexin; its role is primarily as a carrier or diluent in the vial to prevent foaming.

Cortexin Side Effects & Safety

Cortexin, like any medication, can have potential side effects and concerns regarding safety, although it is generally considered well-tolerated when used as directed.

Here are some common side effects:

  • Allergic Reactions: As with any peptide-based drug, there is a possibility of allergic reactions, which might include rash, itching, or more severe reactions like anaphylaxis, although this is rare.
  • Local Reactions: At the injection site, there might be local reactions such as redness, swelling, or pain.
  • Systemic Reactions: Although less common, some individuals might experience systemic reactions like headache, dizziness, or gastrointestinal disturbances.
  • Neurological Effects: In rare cases, there might be neurological symptoms such as agitation or increased excitability, particularly in sensitive individuals or when used in higher doses.

Safety considerations include:

  • Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: The safety of Cortexin during pregnancy and breastfeeding is not well established.
  • Interaction with Other Medications: It’s important to discuss with a healthcare provider about any other medications being taken, as Cortexin may interact with other drugs.
  • Pre-existing Health Conditions: Individuals with certain pre-existing health conditions should use Cortexin cautiously. The healthcare provider should be informed about any underlying health issues.
  • Overdose and Misuse: As with any medication, following the prescribed dosage and not exceeding it is crucial to prevent overdose.
  • Quality and Source: Ensuring the authenticity and quality of Cortexin is important, as counterfeit or low-quality products can pose significant health risks.


In conclusion, Cortexin emerges as a notable peptide-based nootropic and neuroprotective drug, offering potential benefits in enhancing cognitive functions and treating a variety of neurological conditions.

Its multifaceted action, involving neuroprotection, modulation of neurotransmitter systems, enhancement of neurotrophic factors, and antioxidant properties, positions it as a valuable therapeutic option in the realm of neurology and cognitive health.

Cortexin offers a ray of hope for many dealing with cognitive impairments and neurological disorders. However, its use must be guided by professional medical advice, with a clear understanding of its potential benefits and risks.


How long does Cortexin take to work?

Cortexin’s effects can vary, but generally, users may begin to notice benefits within a few days to a week of consistent use. 

What is the elimination half-life of Cortexin?

The elimination half-life of Cortexin is roughly 10 hours, meaning it takes about that time for its concentration in your body to drop by half.

Should you cycle Cortexin?

Yes, it’s wise to cycle Cortexin. Taking breaks helps prevent tolerance and maintains its effectiveness. Try a few weeks on, then a week off.

Can I stack Cortexin with other nootropics?

Absolutely! Stacking Cortexin with other nootropics can enhance cognitive benefits. Just ensure they’re compatible and start with low doses.

How should I store Cortexin?

Keep your Cortexin in a cool, dry place away from sunlight. Proper storage ensures it stays potent and safe for use.

Sources, Studies, and Scientific Research
  1. Kurkin, Denis V et al. “Neuroprotective action of Cortexin, Cerebrolysin and Actovegin in acute or chronic brain ischemia in rats.” PloS one vol. 16,7 e0254493. 14 Jul. 2021, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0254493 ↩
  2. Yazar, Uğur, and Ahmet Ayar. “Cortexin® Ameliorates High Glucose-Induced Neuropathy in Cultured Rat Sensory Neurons.” Neuroendocrinology vol. 113,9 (2023): 924-929. doi:10.1159/000530766 ↩
  3. Tsyganov, V N, and M M Bogoslovskiĭ. “Vliianie korteksina na pamiat’ i vnimanie” [Influence of cortexin on memory and attention]. Voenno-meditsinskii zhurnal vol. 325,9 (2004): 31-5, 80. ↩
  4. Konradi, C, and S Heckers. “Antipsychotic drugs and neuroplasticity: insights into the treatment and neurobiology of schizophrenia.” Biological psychiatry vol. 50,10 (2001): 729-42. doi:10.1016/s0006-3223(01)01267-7 ↩
  5. Zykov, V P et al. “Rezul’taty mul’titsentrovogo issledovaniia éffektivnosti primeneniia korteksina pri kognitivnykh disfunktsiiakh u deteĭ” [Results of a multicenter study on the efficacy of cortexin in treatment of cognitive dysfunction in children]. Zhurnal nevrologii i psikhiatrii imeni S.S. Korsakova vol. 118,3 (2018): 27-31. doi:10.17116/jnevro20181183127-31 ↩
  6. Belova, L A et al. “Effektivnost’ korteksina v ostrom i vosstanovitel’nom periodakh polusharnogo ishemicheskogo insul’ta” [Efficacy of cortexin in acute and recovery periodes of hemispheric ischemic stroke]. Zhurnal nevrologii i psikhiatrii imeni S.S. Korsakova vol. 116,10 (2016): 38-42. doi:10.17116/jnevro201611610138-42 ↩