Galantamine is an alkaloid of natural origin, obtained from bulbs of snowdrops, easily crossing blood-brain barrier and having the ability to reversibly inhibit acetylcholinesterase.
According to the cholinergic hypothesis, currently considered the most probable, Alzheimer's disease is caused by disorders of the cholinergic system. Decreased amount of acetylcholine is also observed. On the basis of this phenomenon, galantamine is applied to patients with Alzheimer’s-type torpor as a medicine.
The mechanism of activity of galantamine is based on increasing the level of acetylcholine - a neurotransmitter taking part in nerve impulse transmission, both in the central and peripheral nervous system. By blocking the enzyme which breaks it down, i.e. acetylcholinesterase (AChE), the increase of the concentration of acetylcholine in the brain takes place.
As an ingredient of dietary supplements, galantamine finds application as a nootropic substance, optimizing cognitive abilities, sharpening senses, improving memory, attention and motivation. Moreover, it is distinguished by a relaxing effect, thanks to which it works well when applied in the evening, facilitating deep and high-quality sleep.