Gamma-amino-beta-hydroxybutyric acid

IUPAC_name = 4-amino-3-hydroxybutanoic acid

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CAS_number = 352-21-6
ChemSpiderID = 2064
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PubChem = 2149
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molecular_weight = 119.12 g/mol
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Gamma-amino-beta-hydroxybutyric acid (GABOB) is a derivative of the neurotransmitter GABA. It is found naturally in the human body but it is not known whether it has an important physiological role at normal concentrations.

GABOB has anticonvulsant properties, [Chemello R, Giaretta D, Pellegrini A, Testa G. Effect of gamma-amino-beta-hydroxybutyric acid (GABHB) on experimentally-induced epileptic activity. (Italian). "Rivista di Neurologia". 1980 Jul-Aug;50(4):253-68.] but is of relatively low potency when used by itself, and is more useful as an adjutant treatment used alongside another anticonvulsant drug. [García-Flores E, Farías R. gamma-Amino-beta-hydroxybutyric acid as add-on therapy in adult patients with severe focal epilepsy. "Stereotactic and Functional Neurosurgery". 1997;69(1-4 Pt 2):243-6.] It has two stereoisomers, with the (3S) isomer d-GABOB being around twice as potent an anticonvulsant as the (3R) isomer l-GABOB. [Roberts E, Krause DN, Wong E, Mori A. Different efficacies of d- and l-gamma-amino-beta-hydroxybutyric acids in GABA receptor and transport test systems. "Journal of Neuroscience". 1981 Feb;1(2):132-40.]

Other studies have suggested it may produce improved learning and memory function, [Banfi S, Fonio W, Allievi E, Pinza M, Dorigotti L. Cyclic GABA-GABOB analogues. IV. Activity on learning and memory. "Il Farmaco; Edizione Scientifica". 1984 Jan;39(1):16-22.] probably through a cholinergic mechanism, [Yano S, Mizuno M, Watanabe K. Stimulatory effect of some therapeutic drugs used for improving cerebral insufficiency on gastric acid secretion in rats. "Pharmacology". 1990;40(4):205-10.] as well as boosting growth hormone release. [Fioretti P, Melis GB, Paoletti AM, Parodo G, Caminiti F, Corsini GU, Martini L. Gamma-amino-beta-hydroxy butyric acid stimulates prolactin and growth hormone release in normal women. "Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism". 1978 Dec;47(6):1336-40.] [Takahara J, Yunoki S, Yakushiji W, Yamauchi J, Hosogi H, Ofuji T. Stimulatory effects of gamma-aminohydroxybutyric acid (GABOB) on growth hormone, prolactin and cortisol release in man. "Hormone and Metabolic Research". 1980 Jan;12(1):31-4.] [Melis GB, Paoletti AM, Mais V, Mastrapasqua NM, Strigini F, Fruzzetti F, Guarnieri G, Gambacciani M, Fioretti P. Dose-related effects of gamma-amino beta-hydroxy butyric acid (GABOB) infusion on growth hormone secretion in normal women. "Journal of Endocrinological Investigation". 1982 Mar-Apr;5(2):101-6.] However its effectiveness for these purposes has not been well established and it is not widely used in medicine, although it is sold as a dietary supplement.


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