Huperzine A

Last Updated: September 28 2022

Huperzine-A is a cognitive enhancer that inhibits an enzyme that degrades the learning neurotransmitter, acetylcholine; due to this, a relative increase occurs. It belongs to the cholinergics class of molecules, and may be useful in fighting cognitive decline in the elderly. May need to be cycled.

Huperzine A is most often used for


Huperzine-A is a compound extracted from the herbs of the Huperziceae family. It is known as an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, which means that it stops an enzyme from breaking down acetylcholine which results in increases in acetylcholine.

Acetylcholine is known as the learning neurotransmitter, and is involved in muscle contraction as well. Increasing levels of acetylcholine is routinely used as a technique amongst weight-lifters and scholars.

Huperzine-A appears to be a relatively safe compound from animal studies of toxicity and studies in humans showing no side-effects at dosages routinely supplemented with. Huperzine-A is in preliminary trials for usage in fighting Alzheimer's Disease as well.

What else is Huperzine A known as?
Note that Huperzine A is also known as:
  • Qian Ceng Ta
Dosage information

Supplementation of huperzine-A tends to be in the range of 50-200mcg daily, and while this can be divided into multiple dosages throughout the day it tends to be taken at a single dose. Supplementation of huperzine-A does not require food to be coingested with it and can be taken in a fasted state.

Cycling of huperzine-A tends to be used since it can remain in the body for quite some time (half-life of 10-14 hours), and although a 'cycle' of huperzine-A tends to last 2-4 weeks followed by a break the optimal cycle length is not yet known.

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6.^Rajendran V, Saxena A, Doctor BP, Kozikowski APSynthesis of more potent analogues of the acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, huperzine BBioorg Med Chem Lett.(2002 Jun 3)
8.^Feng S, Wang Z, He X, Zheng S, Xia Y, Jiang H, Tang X, Bai DBis-huperzine B: highly potent and selective acetylcholinesterase inhibitorsJ Med Chem.(2005 Feb 10)
9.^He XC, Feng S, Wang ZF, Shi Y, Zheng S, Xia Y, Jiang H, Tang XC, Bai DStudy on dual-site inhibitors of acetylcholinesterase: Highly potent derivatives of bis- and bifunctional huperzine BBioorg Med Chem.(2007 Feb 1)
10.^Qian BC, Wang M, Zhou ZF, Chen K, Zhou RR, Chen GSPharmacokinetics of tablet huperzine A in six volunteersZhongguo Yao Li Xue Bao.(1995 Sep)
11.^Li YX, Zhang RQ, Li CR, Jiang XHPharmacokinetics of huperzine A following oral administration to human volunteersEur J Drug Metab Pharmacokinet.(2007 Oct-Dec)
15.^Boudinot E, Taysse L, Daulon S, Chatonnet A, Champagnat J, Foutz ASEffects of acetylcholinesterase and butyrylcholinesterase inhibition on breathing in mice adapted or not to reduced acetylcholinesterasePharmacol Biochem Behav.(2005 Jan)
16.^Lane RM, Potkin SG, Enz ATargeting acetylcholinesterase and butyrylcholinesterase in dementiaInt J Neuropsychopharmacol.(2006 Feb)
21.^Ma T, Gong K, Yan Y, Zhang L, Tang P, Zhang X, Gong YHuperzine A promotes hippocampal neurogenesis in vitro and in vivoBrain Res.(2013 Apr 19)