Injectable testosterone undecanoate has more favourable pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics than testosterone enanthate

Eur J Endocrinol. 1995 Apr;132(4):514-9. doi: 10.1530/eje.0.1320514.


Testosterone preparations producing constant physiological testosterone serum levels are desirable for long-term treatment of androgen deficiency. However, all injectable testosterone esters used clinically for substitution of male hypogonadism are characterized by unfavourable pharmacokinetics. We therefore tested two groups of five long-term orchidectomized cynomolgus monkeys (Macaca fascicularis), which received a single intramuscular injection of 10 mg/kg body weight of an injectable testosterone undecanoate (TU) preparation or testosterone enanthate (TE) in a preclinical study to assess the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic characteristics of TU in comparison to TE. The dose was equivalent to 6.3 and 7.2 mg of pure testosterone per kilogram body weight in the TU and TE group, respectively. Following injection of TU, mean serum testosterone rose to 58 +/- 18 nmol/l on day 1 and remained at moderately supraphysiological levels of 40-68 nmol/l for 45 days. Thereafter, testosterone levels were maintained in the normal range of intact monkeys for another 56 days. The TE injection resulted in highly supraphysiological levels of 100-177 nmol/l from immediately after the injection to day 5. A rapid decline followed and testosterone levels reached the lower limit of normal after 31 days. Serum testosterone levels were significantly higher in the TE-than in the TU-treated animals on days 0.5-7 (p < 0.05). Significantly lower testosterone levels were seen in the TE than in the TU group on days 16, 22, 25 and 31 (p < 0.05).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Body Weight / physiology
  • Ejaculation / physiology
  • Estradiol / blood
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone / blood
  • Injections, Intramuscular
  • Macaca fascicularis
  • Male
  • Orchiectomy
  • Testosterone / administration & dosage
  • Testosterone / analogs & derivatives*
  • Testosterone / blood
  • Testosterone / pharmacokinetics
  • Testosterone / pharmacology


  • Testosterone
  • Estradiol
  • testosterone enanthate
  • Follicle Stimulating Hormone
  • testosterone undecanoate