Clinical Pharmacology

Ketan Zota
Zota Healthcare

Clinical pharmacology connects the gap between medical practice and laboratory science. The main objective is to promote the safety of prescription, maximise the drug effects and minimise the side effects. This article examines role of clinical pharmacology in drug development and covers various aspects like branches of clinical pharmacology and much more .

Clinical Pharmacology is the scientific study of drugs and their clinical use. The outline of this subject roots itself under the basic concept of pharmacology but has emphasis on its principles and quantitative methods.

Clinical Pharmacology's study has a broad scope, with research patterns getting better with time and technology, the discovery of new molecules and drug effectiveness has become better. It has also bridged the gap between medical practices and laboratory application of science. The main motive to understand this topic in depth is to maximize drug benefits and minimize their side effects. Being proven by many independent case studies and research, Clinical Pharmacology has been categorized as the most trustworthy option to obtain complete and accurate drug information.

The recent study on health patterns have proven the sudden indulgence of unwanted molecules leading to indifferent diseases. The arising health issues have been a major concern to all healthcare providers. The need to mend these issues have received an accurate and quick response in order to carry out the medication process in time and effectively. The conceptual study of drugs under Clinical Pharmacology has resulted in a positive growth of the medical industry as whole. The workflow of every person under this branch of science has been productive and more knowledgeable since the introduction of this subject.

To understand Clinical Pharmacology, the association with pharmacists skilled in areas of drug information and safety is very essential. In many countries, the pharmacists are undertaking the knowledge of this wide subject in depth.

This further helps to educate the society about the same and to do so Clinical Pharmacologists have trained themselves by understanding the rigorous medical and scientific training.

This training helps the pharmacologists evaluate the evidence and focus on various case studies to produce new data. To get desired results, they are also connected to the outpatients for health and clinical care, teaching, and supervision under medical expertise. The result is not restricted only to the effects of drugs. The subject is further divided into different branches to analyze Clinical Pharmacology as a whole.

Branches of Clinical Pharmacology

1. Pharmacokinetics

This branch is a study of how an organism affects a drug. Pharmacokinetics studies on how the body affects a specific chemical(xenobiotic) after its intake through the bodily mechanisms of absorption and distribution, as well as the metabolic changes of the substance in the body. The LADME scheme is the case study model that helps one to understand Pharmacokinetics in a better way.
  • Liberation - is the process of release of a drug from the pharmaceutical formulation
  • Absorption - is the process of a drug entering the blood circulation
  • Distribution - is the dispersion of drug substances throughout the fluids and tissues of the body
  • Metabolism - is the process where the recognition by the organism to a foreign substance is present
  • Excretion - is the process that carries the removal of the substances from the body. In rare cases, some drugs irreversibly accumulate in body tissue

2. Pharmacodynamics

Pharmacodynamics is the study of drug's reaction to the body. The study explains about drug concentration and its therapeutic effect. It also explains about the physical and chemical effects of drugs on our body. Under the study of Pharmacodynamics there are 7 main kinds of drug actions observed;
  • Stimulating action.
  • Depressing action.
  • Blocking action.
  • Stabilizing action.
  • Replacing action.Direct beneficial
  • chemical reaction.
  • Direct harmful chemical reaction.
3. Therapeutics

This branch of pharmacology deals with the art and science of treatment of various diseases. The application of pharmacological formulation with drug knowledge helps in obtaining the results to prevent and cure the diseases .

4. Toxicology

Toxicology is the branch of pharmacology that includes the study of adverse /side effects of drugs on the body. It deals with and gives and detailed explanation of the symptoms, mechanisms, treatment and detection of poisoning caused by different chemical substances. Factors that influence the adverse effect of the drug include dosage (acute or chronic), age, the route of exposure, sex, and environment.

These four branches of Clinical Pharmacology have considered to have given the utmost detailed result to every drug formulation. The other branches of Clinical Pharmacology are;

Pharmacy-This branch of study helps to prepare suitable dosage composition for its administration.
  • Pharmacognosy - This branch helps you to identify the drug just by seeing or smelling it.
  • Pharmacoeconomics - This study focuses on the cost of drugs.
  • Pharmacogenetics - It is about studying the variation in the results of drug response to the body.
  • Pharamcogenomics - This branch deals with the application of genomic technologies to new drug discovery.
  • Pharmacoepidemiology - This deals with the effects of drugs on large population through three different methods; (a)Observational Cohort Studies (b)Case Control Studies (c) Phase Trials.
These branches of Clinical Pharmacology are a major asset for anyone to understand this subject the simplest way. In today's world the patient treatment is getting more complex for which all the medical professionals have to stay in loop with the introduction of new therapies. The research and development on the continuous observation with new therapies have delivered rapid and favourable results. From accuracy of the drug formulation to its effectiveness, Clinical Pharmacology has been beneficial to all in this field of science. The certain benefits that highlight the need of this subject include;

1. Maximize Time

With the advancement of technology, the processes have become quick. Under Clinical Pharmacology, the application of technology into scientific practices has been perfect delivering positive and quick results too. Hence, Clinical Pharmacology has been the most trustworthy and swift source of drug information. The information is now just few clicks away helping you save your time.

2. Better Patient Care

Clinical Pharmacology helps you speed up your work on researching drug data and screening for all kind of clinical problems. With aligned focus, it further helps you save your time and give the patients a proper care and guidance about the drug.

3.Increase Productivity

Clinical Pharmacology accelerates the productivity by answering the doubts in relation to any kind of drug. It is a vast subject that covers all drug related data and its efficiency pushes the sector growth easily.

4.Improved Outcomes

Clinical Pharmacology's quality is ensured through its real-time updates and a trustworthy editorial process. This results in delivering you the most accurate, evidence-based drug information to inform your decisions and improve outcomes.

Clinical Pharmacology has an active involvement with the pharmacologists to get an accurate result time to time. And with everything falling into place, this subject has been familiar to Pharmaceutical industry as well.

Pharmaceutical companies have always been driven by the methods that only lead to discovery, development and marketing of new and established drugs. The Pharmaceutical industry is comprised of organisations varying from global companies to smaller. These companies further categorized into disease-focused, specialised companies, large and small biotechnology companies, and companies focused on generic, overthe- counter (OTC) or complementary medicines.

Clinical Pharmacology has a major role to play in Pharmaceutical industry. It is only clinical pharmacologist who has a vast and detailed perspective to every aspect of drug discovery, its formulation and use. Every branch of clinical pharmacology from pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics to pharmacoepidemiology has an influence to Pharmaceutical industry and equally critical to understand in order to get desired results.

The clinical pharmacologist can further integrate knowledge as required. The details of the drug target, disease pathophysiology, context and management play a critical role in medical science. Also the preclinical and clinical data are important to guide drug development in an ethical,informed and efficient manner.

Clinical Pharmacology and Pharmacologist in today's progressive world are the most reliable resource to every player in the Pharmaceutical Industry. It is not that Pharmaceutical industry is not well equipped with drug interaction and research but the results are at times not accurate as compared to Clinical Pharmacology.

Clinical pharmacologists are capable to work in a wide range of roles across companies. According to the surrounding environment they will need to develop skills and expertise beyond the normal pattern. There are types of roles available for a clinical pharmacologist to play. And the knowledge, skills and attitudes required to perform their roles effectively are discussed below;

1. Traditional Roles

The clinical pharmacologist in industry is been involved at the early stages of clinical drug development. The planning, design, conduct, analysis, interpretation and reporting have been classified into Phase I and Phase II studies in humans. Here Phase I involves building a clinical strategy on the basis of trial conducted, for marketing purpose whereas Phase II is about proving the concept of clinical trials effective on the population. In both the Phases, the clinical pharmacologist has to study the exploring issues like drug interactions, dosage forms according to age groups and development stages(early and late development stage).

2. Specialised Roles

Clinical pharmacologists have diverse areas of interest within the discipline of Clinical Pharmacology. Many of these roles and skills are required by the pharmaceutical industry to get accurate and desired results. Along with their broad training and background, clinical pharmacologists are well placed to integrate their area of interest with the functional and therapeutic area groups. The Pharmacologist can involve their skills with the following groups, as per their expertise
  • Preclinical development
  • Pharmacogenetics
  • Pharmacoepidemiology
  • Pharmacovigilance
  • (benefit/harm management)
  • Pharmacoeconomics
  • Late clinical development
  • Phase III confirmatory trials.
3.Other activities

A clinical pharmacologist can contribute in greater or lesser extent of events in the Pharmaceutical industry. The activities they can participate into are classified as;
  • Regulatory activities - interaction with regulatory authorities and participate in regulatory strategy planning.
  • Outsourcing - manage academic contracts and CRO.
  • Intellectual property managementinvolvement in IP protection strategies including decisions to patent, scientific and clinical advice for patent defence, assisting with the preparation of patents.
  • Advisory - arrange and manage interactions with key scientific and clinical advisers to ensure appropriate product development.
  • Management and financial activities - quicker development plans that gives higher net present value.
  • Due diligence activities - involvement in scientific and clinical analysis of data.
The clinical pharmacologist in industry has specialist training in clinical pharmacology apart from the basic training as a physician. Though the Pharmaceutical companies provide in-house training or externally, for the required industryspecific skills. But much experience is gained through hands-on activities.

Clinical Pharmacology is a different kind of drug information resource. To have as positive impact on every aspect of your healthcare organization, Clinical Pharmacology is indeed a trustworthy resource.