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Clinical data
Trade names Tenuate
Synonyms Diethylpropion
AHFS/ Monograph
MedlinePlus a682037
  • US: B (No risk in non-human studies)
Routes of
ATC code
Legal status
Legal status
Pharmacokinetic data
Biological half-life 4-6 hours (metabolites)[1]
Excretion Urine (>75%)[1]
CAS Number
PubChem CID
ECHA InfoCard 100.001.836
Chemical and physical data
Formula C13H19NO
Molar mass 205.30 g/mol
3D model (JSmol)
Chirality Racemic mixture
 NYesY (what is this?)  (verify)

Amfepramone (INN)[note 1] is a stimulant drug of the phenethylamine, amphetamine, and cathinone classes that is used as an appetite suppressant.[2][3] It is used in the short-term management of obesity, along with dietary and lifestyle changes.[2] Amfepramone is most closely chemically related to the antidepressant and smoking cessation aid bupropion (previously called amfebutamone), which has also been developed as a weight-loss medicine when in a combination product with naltrexone.[4]


Amfepramone itself lacks any affinity for the monoamine transporters and instead functions as a prodrug to ethcathinone.[5] Ethcathinone (and therefore amfepramone as well) is a very weak dopaminergic and serotonergic, and is approximately 10x and 20x stronger on norepinephrine in comparison, respectively.[5] As a result, ethcathinone and amfepramone can essentially be considered a member of the class of drugs known as norepinephrine releasing agents (NRAs).


Amfepramone is believed to have relatively low abuse potential.[6][7][8][9] but recently there have been reports of teens and adults in the UK abusing this drug, known as "tombstones" to the abusers.


Amfepramone is classified as a Schedule IV controlled substance in the United States. It is also a Schedule IV controlled substance in Canada. In the UK Amfepramone is a class C drug [10] and as a medicine, it is a Schedule 3 Controlled Drug which requires safe custody.


Amfepramone can be synthesized from propiophenone by bromination, followed by reaction with diethylamine.[11][12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Another medically-utilized name is diethylpropion (BAN and AAN). Chemical names include: α-methyl-β-keto-N,N-diethylphenethylamine, N,N-diethyl-β-ketoamphetamine and N,N-diethylcathinone. Brand names include: Anorex, Linea, Nobesine, Prefamone, Regenon, Tepanil and Tenuate.


  1. ^ a b "SPC-DOC_PL 16133-0001" (PDF). Medicines Healthcare products Regulatory Agency. Essential Nutrition Ltd. 18 November 2011. Retrieved 18 July 2014. [permanent dead link]
  2. ^ a b Brayfield, A, ed. (30 January 2013). "Diethylpropion Hydrochloride". Martindale: The Complete Drug Reference. London, UK: Pharmaceutical Press. Retrieved 18 July 2014. 
  3. ^ "TGA Approved Terminology for Medicines, Section 1 – Chemical Substances" (PDF). Therapeutic Goods Administration, Department of Health and Ageing, Australian Government. July 1999: 42. 
  4. ^ Arias, HR; Santamaría, A; Ali, SF (2009). "Pharmacological and neurotoxicological actions mediated by bupropion and diethylpropion.". International Review of Neurobiology. 88: 223–55. PMID 19897080. doi:10.1016/S0074-7742(09)88009-4. 
  5. ^ a b Rothman, RB; Baumann, MH (2006). "Therapeutic Potential of Monoamine Transporter Substrates". Current Topics in Medicinal Chemistry. 6 (17): 1845–1859. PMID 17017961. doi:10.2174/156802606778249766. 
  6. ^ Cohen, S (1977). "Diethylpropion (Tenuate): An Infrequently Abused Anorectic". Psychosomatics. 18 (1): 28–33. PMID 850721. doi:10.1016/S0033-3182(77)71101-6. [permanent dead link]
  7. ^ Jasinski, DR; Krishnan, S (June 2009). "Abuse Liability and Safety of Oral Lisdexamfetamine Dimesylate in Individuals with a History of Stimulant Abuse". Journal of Psychopharmacology. 23 (4): 419–427. PMID 19329547. doi:10.1177/0269881109103113. 
  8. ^ "Tepanil (diethylpropion hydrochloride) tablet, extended release". Dailymed. National Institutes of Health. 
  9. ^ Caplan, J (May 1963). "Habituation to Diethylpropion (Tenuate)". Canadian Medical Association Journal. 88: 943–944. PMC 1921278Freely accessible. PMID 14018413. 
  10. ^ "Class C Drugs". Schedule 2 Controlled Drugs. UK Legislation. 
  11. ^ US patent 3001910, "Anorexigenic Propiophenones", issued 1961-09-26, assigned to Temmler-Werke 
  12. ^ Hyde, J. F.; Browning, E.; Adams, R. (1928). "Synthetic Homologs of d,l-Ephedrine". Journal of the American Chemical Society. 50 (8): 2287–2292. doi:10.1021/ja01395a032.