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Lab Manual for UCSF Clinical Laboratories

Lab Manual for SFGH

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BUPRENORPHINE, URINE

Item Value
Test code BUPR, BUPC
Performed by? Chemistry
Sendout? no
Price range $$
In House Availability Stat or routine, 24 hours/7 days
Principle Homogeneous enzyme immunoassay
Interpretation CLINICAL SIGNIFICANCE: Buprenorphine is a semi-synthetic opiate analgesic used in the treatment of opiate addiction. Buprenorphine blocks opioid withdrawal by exhibiting partial agonist activity at the µ-opiate receptor. Buprenorphine is metabolized by CYP3A4 to norbuprenorphine, followed by glucuronidation of buprenorphine and norbuprenorphine. A sublingual co-formulation of buprenorphine with naloxone (Suboxone¨), approved in the US in 2002, was produced in attempts to deter diversion and intravenous misuse. However, buprenorphine still has abuse potential. This test can be used to monitor buprenorphine treatment and determine abuse.

This assay detects buprenorphine and its primary metabolite, norbuprenorphine. It does not cross-react with the conjugated metabolites, buprenorphine-glucuronide or norbuprenorphine-glucuronide. False negative results can occur for patients who are also prescribed a CYP3A4 inhibitor.

CUTOFF: 10 ng/mL

Drug detection period: Up to two weeks, due to the long half-life of norbuprenorphine

Positive results are not confirmed. Confirmation can be performed as an "add on" test by special request, if the specimen is still available. Page the Chemistry/Toxicology Fellow on call, at 415-719-5166, if you have questions about confirmatory testing.


Container type sterile, screw-capped container, without preservative
Amount to Collect 20 mL
Sample type Urine
Min. Volume 6 mL
Normal range Negative for patients not prescribed buprenorphine
Positive for patients prescribed buprenorphine
Stability Minimum 1 week at 2-8°C
Turn around times Screening results are reported in 1 to 8 hours.
Last Updated 9/16/2015 10:13:26 AM
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