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IDrugs. 2004 Aug;7(8):755-63.

The pivotal role of drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics in the discovery and development of new medicines.

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Pharmidex, 72 New Bond Street, London, W1S 1RR, UK.


An appropriate drug metabolism and pharmacokinetic (DMPK) profile remains a major hurdle to reducing risk and improving productivity in pharmaceutical R&D, accounting for approximately 40% of all drug failures. For orally administered drugs, failure is often attributable to low intestinal absorption and/or high clearance, causing poor and variable bioavailability. Additional reasons for failure include drug-drug interactions and the presence of active metabolites. With a poor pharmacokinetic profile, it can be difficult to achieve the dose profile required for therapeutic efficacy. The main role that DMPK plays in drug discovery is therefore the prediction of drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics in humans. Successful prediction can be expected to reduce the rate of attrition during drug discovery and development. This has led to the recognition that DMPK is an essential component of the drug discovery process. Both this and the need to screen ever greater numbers of compounds have led to major changes in both technology and the process of drug discovery.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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