An Alertness Medicine
Modafinil descreases reaction time in psychological tests. The military – very concerned with human performance in extreme situations – has used it in simulated military combat situation. People on modafinil perform better across a range of tests – verbal and spatial intelligence is increased. Modafinil doesn’t just keep you awake – it increased “vigilance”.
Modafinil is sold around the world under the following brand names: Alertec®; APO-Modafinil, Activigil; Alertex, Modasomil, Modavigil, Modiodal, Provigil, Vigia, Vigicer, and Vigil.
Scientists don’t fully understand how modafinil works; it is different from other nervous system stimulants. Modafinil usually produces fewer adverse side effects than stimulants like amphetamines. These negative consequences of amphetamines include bodily agitation and trouble sleeping when the patient is allowed to sleep.
For a long time, scientists believed modafinil differed from Ritalin and the amphetamines partly in that modafinil did not act as a dopamine receptor agonist. Althouth modafinil works even only on people with intact alpha-adregergic systems, the drug is not an andregenic agonist. Like these other drugs, modafinil increases c-fos expression levels, but in only the subcortical regions such as the anterior hypothalamus and amygdala nucleus.
Modafinil activates oxerin-containing neurons. Neurons in the lateral hypothalamus produce orexin-A and orexin-B. These are neuropeptides of 33 amino acids and 28 amino acids respectively.
The Food and Drug Administration has mandated a warning be added for modafinil about the potential for rashes and psychiatic symptoms. Doctors were cautioned about giving the drug to people with psychiatric conditions.