Simultaneous subcutaneous implantation of two osmotic minipumps connected to a jugular vein catheter in the rat

Johannes Wedel, Michel Weij, Annemieke Smit-van Oosten, Jan-Luuk Hillebrands*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Subcutaneous osmotic pump implantation connected to a venous catheter is a well-established method for delivering compounds intravenously for an intermediate duration (approximately two weeks). When prolonged release is desired (approximately four weeks) reduced flow rate is needed with a similar pump volume. With a fixed intra-pump compound concentration, reduced flow rate results in unwanted reduced bioavailability of the compound. Prolonged intravenous delivery would therefore need a pump replacement, resulting in increased discomfort and confounding effects on experimental outcome. To overcome this, we describe a method to double the compound infusion rate for four weeks by implanting two low-flow rate osmotic pumps (2.5 mu L/h for 28 days) connected to a jugular vein catheter in a single rat. Rats implanted with a single high-flow rate pump (5 mu L/h for 14 days) served as controls. Double pump-implanted rats displayed similar post-operative weight gain and physical activity indicating similar levels of discomfort when compared with single pump-implanted rats. Double pump-implanted rats had an increased risk of pump-related complications (four delivery failures [double pump] versus one delivery failure [single pump]). Our data show that double pump implantation is a feasible alternative to changing pumps or the use of extracorporeal pump systems connected via a long wire to partly restrained animals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)338-341
Number of pages4
JournalLaboratory Animals
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct-2014


  • refinement
  • osmotic pump
  • intravenous administration
  • rat
  • drug delivery

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