Pharmacokinetics (what the body does to a drug) and pharmacodynamics (what a drug does to the body) describe basic principles that are important for predicting and understanding drug effects in the human body. Pharmacokinetics can be defined as the characterization of transport processes of drug in the body throughout the phases of absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion. These transport processes are usually studied in blood or blood plasma and evaluated in terms of pharmacokinetic parameters such as clearance, volume of distribution and elimination half-life. These principles are of particular importance in the clinical use of drugs when dealing with pharmacodynamic issues such as drug interactions, concentration response relations, therapeutics versus non therapeutic effects, dosing schedules and differential drug actions at receptor sites. The course will discuss two important (psycho)pharmacological principles of receptors: first, they are organized in multiple subtypes, and second, their interaction with drugs can be defined as agonist, partial antagonist, antagonist and inverse agonist. The course will cover the major principles of signal transduction, in particular in relation to the nervous system. Furthermore, the basic principles of drug metabolism and toxicity will be discussed. Finally, the process of drug discovery and development is a topic of interest.
• To explain the basic principles of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of drugs.
Katzung BG et al. Basic and clinical pharmacology. McGraw Hill (11th edition), 2009, e-version via library