The parent compound from which BU-48 was derived (with N-methyl rather than methylcyclopropyl on the nitrogen and lacking the aliphatic hydroxyl group) is a powerful μ-opioid agonist 1000x more potent than morphine, but in contrast BU-48 has only weak analgesic effects and instead acts primarily as a δ-opioidagonist. Its main effects are to produce convulsions, but it may also have antidepressant effects.
^Lewis JW, Bentley KW, Cowan A. Narcotic Analgesics and Antagonists. Annual Reviews in Pharmacology 1971;11:241-270.
^Broom DC, Guo L, Coop A, Husbands S, Lewis JW, Woods JH, Traynor JR. BU48: A novel buprenorphine analogue that exhibits delta-opioid mediated convulsions but not delta-opioid-mediated antinociception in mice. Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 2000 Sep; 294(3): 1195–1200. PMID 10945877
^Broom DC, Jutkiewicz EM, Rice KC, Traynor JR, Woods JH. Behavioral effects of delta-opioid receptor agonists: potential antidepressants? Japanese Journal of Pharmacology. 2002 Sep;90(1):1-6. doi:10.1254/jjp.90.1PMID 12396021