PubChem CID
Chemical and physical data
Formula C27H33NO4
Molar mass 435.554 g/mol
3D model (JSmol)

BU-48 is a drug that is used in scientific research. It is from the oripavine family, related to better-known drugs such as etorphine and buprenorphine.

The parent compound from which BU-48 was derived (with N-methyl rather than methylcyclopropyl on the nitrogen and lacking the aliphatic hydroxyl group) is a powerful μ-opioid agonist 1000x more potent than morphine,[1] but in contrast BU-48 has only weak analgesic effects and instead acts primarily as a δ-opioid agonist. Its main effects are to produce convulsions,[2] but it may also have antidepressant effects.[3]


  1. Lewis JW, Bentley KW, Cowan A. Narcotic Analgesics and Antagonists. Annual Reviews in Pharmacology 1971;11:241-270.
  2. Broom DC, Guo L, Coop A, Husbands S, Lewis JW, Woods JH, Traynor JR. BU48: A novel buprenorphine analogue that exhibits delta-opioid mediated convulsions but not delta-opioid-mediated antinociception in mice. Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 2000 Sep; 294(3): 1195–1200. PMID 10945877
  3. Broom DC, Jutkiewicz EM, Rice KC, Traynor JR, Woods JH. Behavioral effects of delta-opioid receptor agonists: potential antidepressants? Japanese Journal of Pharmacology. 2002 Sep;90(1):1-6. doi:10.1254/jjp.90.1 PMID 12396021

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