The Göttingen minipig is the most commonly used pig breed in preclinical drug development in Europe and has recently also been explored for physiologically based pharmacokinetic modelling. To develop such a model, not only physiological data from adult animals but also data from juvenile animals are required, especially when using this model for paediatric drug development. Therefore, the aim of our study was to document body and organ weights (brain, heart, lungs, liver, gastrointestinal tract, spleen and kidney), lengths of the small and large intestines and pH values of the gastrointestinal tract in Göttingen minipigs from the foetal stage until the age of 5 months. Postnatal organ and body weights were fitted to regression models to find suitable equations that could be used to estimate organ weights as a function of body weight in the neonatal and juvenile Göttingen minipig. Most organs followed a non-linear growth curve during the first 5 months of life. In general, relative organ weights were the highest during the first week of life, during which the gastric pH was more alkaline than at 28 days of age.
Keywords: Gastrointestinal pH values; Growth; Göttingen minipig; Organ and body weights; Prediction.