Principles of Drug Action - PHAR9101

Faculty: Faculty of Medicine

School: School of Medical Sciences

Course Outline:

Campus: Kensington Campus

Career: Postgraduate

Units of Credit: 6

EFTSL: 0.12500 (more info)

Indicative Contact Hours per Week: 0

CSS Contribution Charge: 2 (more info)

Tuition Fee: See Tuition Fee Schedule

Further Information: See Class Timetable

View course information for previous years.


PLEASE NOTE: This course has had a change of code - up to and including 2009 it was PHPH9101.

This course provides a general overview of the drug development process, and a focus on drug discovery, chemistry relevant to drug development and pharmacokinetics. The course introduces the subjects with an overview of the history of medicines, the various stages of development of a drug from discovery through to market, drug discovery, codes of practice and standards, and the regulation of medicines in Australia. The chapter on chemistry focuses on the importance of isomerism, acids, bases and salts, functionality in organic compounds, important chemical reactions, and characteristics of biological drugs. Various approaches to target identification and drug discovery are outlined, with historical examples provided.

The chapters on pharmacokinetics explores qualitative factors involved in determining pharmacokinetic properties: routes of administration of drugs, physicochemical properties, formulation, absorption, distribution, elimination (metabolism and excretion). Quantitative aspects of pharmacokinetics are also examined, dealing with important parameters used to express concentrations of drug in the body (bioavailability, volume of distribution, clearance, half-lives, etc.), and how dose optimisation can occur by evaluating these variables. The influence of non-drug factors (disease states, age, genetics, etc.) on pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic parameters, and hence on the dose-response relationship is also discussed.

Note: The course is compulsory for programmes 7370, 5504, and 9060.
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