GABA (56-12-2)

γ-Aminobutyric acid (GABA) is the chief inhibitory neurotransmitter in the mammalian central nervous system. It plays a role in regulating neuronal excitability throughout the nervous system. In humans, GABA is also directly responsible for the regulation of muscle tone. Although chemically it is an amino acid, GABA is rarely referred to as such in the scientific or medical communities, because the term “amino acid,” used without a qualifier, conventionally refers to the alpha amino acids, which GABA is not, nor is it ever incorporated into a protein. In spastic diplegia in humans, GABA absorption becomes impaired by nerves damaged from the condition’s upper motor neuron lesion, which leads to hypertonia of the muscles signaled by those nerves that can no longer absorb GABA.

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Chemical Base Information

Name γ-Aminobutyric acid(GABA)
CAS 56-12-2
Purity 98%
Chemical name 4-Aminobutyric acid
Synonyms GABA; df468; gamma;(2D2); (3B7); Gammar; Immu-G; Reanal; DF 468; Gamarex
Molecular Formula C4H9NO2
Molecular Weight 103.12
Melting Point 195 °C
Form Powder
Appearance White crystalline powder
Half Life /
Solubility H2O: 1 M at 20 °C, clear, colorless
Storage Condition Store at RT
Application Applicated in brain health protection.
Testing Document Available


General Description

Gamma Amino Butyric Acid or GABA, as it is commonly known, is a popular amino acid which is touted to have huge benefits for your nervous system. Technically speaking, GABA can help nerve impulses jump over the virtual gaps in communicate and hence helps the brain to transmit signals in a better way. In that sense, it acts as a neurotransmitter.

However, the most important use of Gamma Amino Butyric Acid is because it can act as an effective weight loss supplement. These are not empty claims as it has been proven by numerous researches. GABA is known to increase the production of Human Growth Hormone (HGH). HGH is a proven metabolism booster. In other words, it can increase the rate at which the body burns fat molecules. Therefore, by maintaining a steady intake of Gamma Amino Butyric Acid, it is possible to increase the quantity of fat that the body burns



In 1883, GABA was first synthesized, and it was first known only as a plant and microbe metabolic product.

In 1950, GABA was discovered as an integral part of the mammalian central nervous system.

In 1959, it was shown that at an inhibitory synapse on crayfish muscle fibers GABA acts like stimulation of the inhibitory nerve. Both inhibition by nerve stimulation and by applied GABA are blocked by picrotoxin.


γ-Aminobutyric acid(GABA) 56-12-2 Mechanism Of Action

γ-Aminobutyric acid (GABA) probably represents the most important inhibitory transmitter of the mammalian CNS (also see Chapter 15). Both types of GABAergic inhibition (pre- and postsynaptic) use the same GABAA receptor subtype, which acts by regulation of the chloride channel of the neuronal membrane. A second GABA receptor type, GABAB, that is a G protein–coupled receptor is not considered to be important in understanding the mechanism of hypnotics. Activation of a GABAA receptor by an agonist increases the inhibitory synaptic response of central neurons to GABA through hyperpolarization. Because many, if not all, central neurons receive some GABAergic input, this leads to a mechanism by which CNS activity can be depressed. For example, if the GABAergic interneurons are activated by an agonist that inhibits the monoaminergic structures of the brainstem, hypnotic activity will be observed. The specific neuronal structures in different brain regions affected by GABAA agonist continues to be better defined.


γ-Aminobutyric acid(GABA) 56-12-2 Application

Possible Uses of GABA:

The best information I have on clinical use comes from the writing of Eric Braverman and Carl Pfeiffer. Their 1987 book on the clinical use of amino acids is a classic treatise for the practice of nutritional medicine.


If oral GABA reaches the brain in any significant amount it should act as a tranquilizer. GABA as a neurotransmitter, blocks nerve impulses and slows neuronal transmission. It should make you feel the opposite of a double espresso.

Braverman and Pfeiffer write an anecdotal account of the successful treatment of a forty year old woman suffering from anxiety with 800 mg of GABA a day. They also gave her an undisclosed amount of inositol which we now know is an effective anxiolytic used in treating obsessive compulsive disorder. Was it the GABA or the inositol that helped this patient? Perhaps the combination.

Though this anecdote is inconclusive, using GABA to treat anxiety is the most common and reasonable use.

Will the brain adapt to supplemental GABA? There are no answers to this as no one has proven GABA reaches the brain. Looking at the brain’s capacity to change GABA receptor response and its tendency to build up tolerance to drugs which modify GABA, it is possible that a tolerance to oral GABA might develop and withdrawal symptoms might occur. None are reported in the literature to my knowledge.

Additional Information

GABA is produced in the human brain and functions as a balancer, maintains balance between the body and the mind in states of excitation. GABA supplement aids several complications including Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or ADHD, hypertension or HBP, obesity, insomnia, alcoholism and many more. It is also a great help in treating mental blocks.

GABA supplements are helpful for any active individuals, bodybuilders and athletes. They help in enhancing the bodys muscle mass.


More research

GABA as a supplement

A number of commercial sources sell formulations of GABA for use as a dietary supplement, sometimes for sublingual administration. These sources typically claim that the supplement has a calming effect. These claims are not yet scientifically proven. For example, there is evidence stating that the calming effects of GABA can be seen observably in the human brain after administration of GABA as an oral supplement. However, there is also evidence that GABA does not cross the blood – brain barrier at significant levels.

There are some over-the-counter supplements such as phenylated GABA itself directly, or Phenibut; and Picamilon (both Soviet cosmonaut products) – Picamilon combines niacin and phenylated GABA and crosses the blood–brain barrier as a prodrug that later hydrolyzes into GABA and niacin.



  1. Roth RJ, Cooper JR, Bloom FE (2003). The Biochemical Basis of Neuropharmacology. Oxford [Oxfordshire]: Oxford University Press. p. 106.
  2. Haynes, William M., ed. (2016). CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics (97th ed.). CRC Press. pp. 5–
  3. Roberts, E., and Frankel, S. (1950). gamma-aminobutyric acid in brain: its formation from glutamic acid. J. Biol. Chem. 187, 55–
  4. Abdou, A. M., Higashiguchi, S., Horie, K., Kim, M., Hatta, H., and Yokogoshi, H. (2006). Relaxation and immunity enhancement effects of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) administration in humans. Biofactors 26, 201– 208.


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