The pharmacokinetics of a long-acting oxytetracycline preparation administered i.v. and i.m. to American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis) at 10 mg/kg was determined. Plasma levels of oxytetracycline were measured using high-performance liquid chromatography, and the resulting concentration versus time curve was analyzed using compartmental modeling and noncompartmental modeling techniques for i.v. and i.m. samples, respectively. A two-compartment model best represented the i.v. data. Intravenous administration of oxytetracycline resulted in an extrapolated mean plasma concentration at time zero of 60.63 ± 28.26 μg/ml, with average plasma drug levels of 2.82 ± 0.71 μg/ml at the end of the 192-hr sampling period. Plasma volume of distribution for i.v. oxytetracycline was 0.20 ± 0.09 L/kg, with a harmonic mean elimination half-life of 15.15 hr and mean total body clearance rate of 0.007 ± 0.002 L/hr/kg. Intramuscular administration of oxytetracycline achieved a mean peak plasma concentration of 6.85 ± 1.96 μg/ml at 1 hr after administration, with average plasma drug levels of 4.96 ± 1.97 μg/ml at the end of the 192-hr sampling period. The harmonic mean terminal elimination half-life for i.m. oxytetracycline was 131.23 hr. Based on the results of this study, long-acting preparations of oxytetracycline administered parenterally to American alligators at 10 mg/kg q 5 days is expected to maintain plasma concentrations above the minimum inhibitory concentration of 4.0 μg/ml for susceptible organisms.
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Vol. 35 • No. 3