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Systematic (IUPAC) name
4-[2-[3-(4-hydroxyphenyl)-1-methyl-propyl] aminoethyl]benzene-1,2-diol
CAS number 34368-04-2
ATC code C01CA07
PubChem 36811
DrugBank APRD00122
Chemical data
Formula C18H23NO3 
Mol. mass 301.38 g/mol
SMILES search in eMolecules, PubChem
Synonyms Dobutaminum
Dobutamine hydrochloride
Dobutamine HCl
Pharmacokinetic data
Bioavailability  ?
Metabolism  ?
Half life 2 minutes
Excretion  ?
Therapeutic considerations
Pregnancy cat.


Legal status
Routes  ?

Dobutamine, developed by a laboratory led by Dr. Ronald Tuttle at Eli Lilly & Company, was created to sustain patients with severe heart failure. It is is a sympathomimetic drug that is a selective β1-adrenergic agonist with α1 selective activity, although it is used clinically in cases of cardiogenic shock for its β1 inotropic effect in increasing heart contractility and cardiac output. Dobutamine is used to treat acute but potentially reversible heart failure, such as cardiac surgery or cases of septic or cardiogenic shock, on the basis of its positive inotropic action.[1] The drug is administered as a racemic mixture consisting of both (+) and (−) isomers, and the (+) isomer is a potent β1 agonist while the (−) isomer is a α1 agonist. Dobutamine also has mild β2 agonist activity.[2]


It is a direct-acting agent whose primary activity results from stimulation of the β1-adrenoceptors of the heart, increasing contractility and cardiac output. Since it does not act on dopamine receptors to induce the release of norepinephrine (another α1 agonist), dobutamine is less prone to induce hypertension than is dopamine. Chronotropic, arrhythmogenic, and vasodilative effects are negligible.


Dobutamine can be used in cases of congestive heart failure to increase cardiac output. It is indicated when parenteral therapy is necessary for inotropic support in the short-term treatment of patients with cardiac decompensation due to depressed contractility, which could be the result of either organic heart disease or cardiac surgical procedures. It is not useful in ischemic heart disease because it increases heart rate and thus increases the heart's demand for oxygen.

Dobutamine is also used intraoperatively in case of venous air embolus (VAE) to provide inotropic support.[citation needed]

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Dobutamine". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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