Pharmatherapeutica 1984; 3 (8): 538–550
Setnikar I, Giachetti C, Zanolo G
Blood levels, tissue distribution and excretion patterns of radioactivity were studied in the rat after administration of [14C] glucosamine sulphate by the intravenous or oral route. After intravenous administration, plasma radioactivity declined in the first 30 min, then increased, reaching a peak at the 2nd hour, and disappeared, with a half-disappearance time of 28 hours. The radioactivity diffused rapidly in the tissues. Higher levels than in plasma were reached in the liver and kidneys. There was early incorporation of radioactivity in the skeletal tissues (cartilage and bone). About 50% of the administered radioactivity was excreted with the expired CO2 and about 35% with the urine. Faecal excretion was small (2% of the administered dose). After oral administration, radioactivity was quickly found in plasma, where it reached a peak at 4 hours. It then declined slowly, with biphasic kinetics. The tissue distribution, including uptake in the skeleton, repeated the pattern found after intravenous administration. There was only small faecal excretion, showing an almost complete bioavailability of glucosamine given orally, and the large excretion with the CO2 (82%) showed that glucosamine is to a large extent broken down to smaller fragments. Autoradiographic studies confirmed the tissue distribution pattern and showed in more detail the tissue localization of radioactivity.