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Difficulties in Drug Discovery and Development

New Contributor III
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Drug discovery and development is difficult and requires knowledge, commitment, insight and perhaps an attitude best described by Winston Churchill (1874-1965)....

“Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm....”

A major reason for new drug candidate failure 24 years ago was lack of adequate pharmacokinetics (PK) in humans (the ability of the drug to be absorbed into the body, reach the target organ and remain there long enough to yield therapeutic effect)- 48% of new candidates failed in 1991 because of inadequate PK. Seventeen years later in 2008 this rate of attrition was reduced <1% until at present drug failure due to inadequate PK is nearly nonexistent.

This is because of the tremendous increase in the number of inexpensive and predictive in vitro PK assays now available to discovery teams in the development process. My course,
Application of Pharmacokinetics and Safety Pharmacology for Chemists in Drug Development, guides students in the optimal use of these new assays to achieve acceptable PK for new drug candidates. After attending this course students will be able to define PK/PD principles and terminology, review developments in drug discover, investigate the application of drug development principles, and much more.

This blog post was written by ACS Professional Education instructor, Terry Kenakin. Terry is currently a Professor of Pharmacology at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, Chapel Hill and instructs courses in pharmacology for the American Chemical Society.  Join us on June 23 for a Reddit Ask Me Anything on r/Science with Terry, who will be drawing from his 32 years of experience in industrial drug discovery to answer your questions! For more information on Terry and the courses he teaches head on over to the ACS Professional Education site.