S-phenylpiracetam, a selective DAT inhibitor, reduces body weight gain without influencing locomotor activity

Liga Zvejniece (Coresponding Author), Baiba Svalbe, Edijs Vavers, Marina Makrecka-Kuka, Elina Makarova, Vilnis Liepins, Ivars Kalvinsh, Edgars Liepinsh, Maija Dambrova

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


S-phenylpiracetam is an optical isomer of phenotropil, which is a clinically used nootropic drug that improves physical condition and cognition. Recently, it was shown that S-phenylpiracetam is a selective dopamine transporter (DAT) inhibitor that does not influence norepinephrine (NE) or serotonin (5-HT) receptors. The aim of the present study was to study the effects of S-phenylpiracetam treatment on body weight gain, blood glucose and leptin levels, and locomotor activity. Western diet (WD)-fed mice and obese Zucker rats were treated daily with peroral administration of S-phenylpiracetam for 8 and 12 weeks, respectively. Weight gain and plasma metabolites reflecting glucose metabolism were measured. Locomotor activity was detected in an open-field test. S-phenylpiracetam treatment significantly decreased body weight gain and fat mass increase in the obese Zucker rats and in the WD-fed mice. In addition, S-phenylpiracetam reduced the plasma glucose and leptin concentration and lowered hyperglycemia in a glucose tolerance test in both the mice and the rats. S-phenylpiracetam did not influence locomotor activity in the obese Zucker rats or in the WD-fed mice. The results demonstrate that S-phenylpiracetam reduces body weight gain and improves adaptation to hyperglycemia without stimulating locomotor activity. Our findings suggest that selective DAT inhibitors, such as S-phenylpiracetam, could be potentially useful for treating obesity in patients with metabolic syndrome with fewer adverse health consequences compared to other anorectic agents.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-29
Number of pages9
JournalPharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2017

Field of Science*

  • 3.1 Basic medicine
  • 1.6 Biological sciences

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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