Piracetam-induced changes to membrane physical properties. A combined approach by 31P nuclear magnetic resonance and conformational analysis

Biochem Pharmacol. 1995 Oct 12;50(8):1129-34. doi: 10.1016/0006-2952(95)00225-o.


Piracetam, Nootropil (2-oxo-1-pyrrolidine acetamide), is a drug promoting erythrocyte deformability. To establish the mode of action of this compound, we have investigated its influence on the organization of model phospholipid membranes. 31P NMR data show that the drug induces a structural modification in liposomes made of phosphatidylcholine and phosphatidylethanolamine. Our conformational analysis results have allowed the interpretation of the effect of piracetam on these model membranes: the specific interaction between the drug molecules and the phosphate headgroups induces a new organization of the lipids favouring formation of mobile drug-phospholipid complexes that exhibit an isotropic-type signal in the 31P NMR spectra.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Liposomes / chemistry*
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Models, Molecular
  • Molecular Conformation
  • Nootropic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Phosphatidylcholines / chemistry
  • Phosphatidylethanolamines / chemistry
  • Piracetam / chemistry
  • Piracetam / pharmacology*
  • Temperature


  • Liposomes
  • Nootropic Agents
  • Phosphatidylcholines
  • Phosphatidylethanolamines
  • Piracetam