Pharmacokinetic profiles of nalbuphine after intraperitoneal and subcutaneous administration to C57BL/6 mice

Brenda L. Kick, Pan Shu, Bo Wen, Duxin Sun, Douglas K. Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Mice undergo a variety of procedures that necessitate the use of analgesic agents. Opioids are often essential to successful pain management plans, but most are controlled substances, and their use requires appropriate federal and state registrations. Nalbuphine is a potentially effective opioid analgesic for mice that is not currently classified as a controlled substance. This compound has received little attention as an analgesic for mice, and standard dosage regimens have not been developed. Here we compared the pharmacokinetic profiles of 10 mg/kg nalbuphine in male C57BL/6 mice subcutaneous or intraperitoneal administration. Blood was collected from 3 mice per treatment at 5, 10, 20, and 30 min and 1, 2, 3, 6, 12, and 24 h after administration. Plasma concentrations were measured, and standard pharmacokinetic parameters were calculated. Profile characteristics for each route of administration were similar, with significant differences in plasma concentration at 5 and 30 min and 1 and 3 h. Nalbuphine was absorbed more quickly when administered subcutaneously (Tmax, 5 min) than intraperitoneally (Tmax, 10 min), whereas the drug's half-life was similar between the intraperitoneal (0.94 h) and subcutaneous (1.12 h) routes. The AUC0-tldc and AUC0-inf were higher but the apparent clearance and apparent volume of distribution were lower after subcutaneous administration compared with intraperitoneal dosing. Plasma concentrations were below the level of detection by 12 h. These results suggest that nalbuphine is absorbed in and eliminated quickly from mice, making it a possible candidate for acute pain management.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)534-538
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2017
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology


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