Fractional protein synthesis rates (FSR) are widely measured by the flooding dose technique via either an i.g. or an i.v. route. This study was conducted to compare differences in tracer incorporation and FSR in organs and tissues of fed piglets. The piglets were surgically implanted with catheters and randomly assigned to receive a flooding dose of Phe (1.5 mmol/kg body weight, 40 percent molar enrichment with [2H5]Phe) in saline administered via an i.p. or an i.v. route. [2H5]Phe free-pool enrichment in plasma increased logarithmically (P < 0.05) from 0 to 25% in the i.p. group, whereas it rose to a peak level within 3 min of the tracer injection and then decreased linearly (P < 0.05) in the i.v. group. Intracellular free-pool tracer enrichments in organs and tissues were within the range of the values measured for the plasma-free pool (25-27%), reaching the flooding status. Administration of the tracer via the i.p. and i.v. routes induced a logarithmical pattern (P < 0.05) of a surge in plasma cortisol concentrations within 30 min. Measurements of FSR in plasma, cardiac muscle, and skeletal muscles were lower (P < 0.05) in the i.p. than in the i.v. group due to the adverse effect of cortisol surge being more dramatic (P < 0.05) in the i.p. than in the i.v. group at 30 min of the post-tracer administration. We conclude that FSR may be measured by the flooding dose through an i.p. or an i.v. route and the i.p. route may underestimate FSR by the flooding dose for plasma, cardiac muscle, and skeletal muscles. This concern may be addressed by a fast regimen of sampling to be completed within 12-20 min after an i.p. route of tracer injection.