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Br J Clin Pharmacol. 2004 May;57(5):540-4.

Drug metabolism and ageing.

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  • 1Department of Health Care of the Elderly, Guy's, King's, and St Thomas' School of Medicine, King's College London, London, UK.


Important changes in drug metabolism occur with ageing. Age-associated reductions in function of some but not all cytochrome P450 enzymes (CYPs) have been described. Induction and inhibition of CYPs needs to be revisited in light of recent advances. The function and pharmacology of transporters have not yet been examined for an age-related effect. Finally, the concept of frailty is being underpinned by studies documenting a decline in drug metabolism and changes in disposition in frail older people compared with either healthy elderly or the young.

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