What is Pharmacokinetics, Background and Steps Involved in Pharmacokinetics Study.
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Pharmacokinetics Study

Pharmacokinetics is the study of the way the body deals with the absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion of drugs under investigation expressed in mathematical terms. The effects and the duration of action of the drug are also taken into account. Pharmacokinetics study is usually carried out in healthy volunteers and/or patients. The data obtained from such studies are useful for the design and conduct of subsequent clinical trials.
Clinical pharmacokinetics is the application of pharmacokinetic studies to clinical practice and to the safe and effective therapeutic management of the individual patient.
When conducting clinical pharmacokinetic studies, it is necessary to choose the correct method of drug investigation according to the inherent properties of the investigational drug. At the same time, it should take into account existing information from both non-clinical and clinical studies.


Pharmacokinetics is a branch of medicinal pharmacology that deals with the effects of drugs administered externally. It is derived from the Greek word 'pharmacon' (drug) and kineticos " (motion / momentum). In other words, pharmacokinetics is the study of the relation between dose, plasma concentrations and therapeutic or toxic effects, of a drug. Pharmacokinetic studies are necessary to establish therapeutic schedules, to evaluate their relevance or to proceed to dosage adjustments in patients. This is especially true for medicinal products with a narrow therapeutic range. In some instances, pharmacokinetic studies may be impossible or limited, e.g. where their provision raises insuperable difficulties or would create risks for test subjects; in such cases, the use of medicinal product is partly or completely based upon pharmacodynamic and clinical studies.

Steps Involved in Pharmacokinetics Study:

1. Adsorption:
Absorption is the process whereby a substance entering the body is assimilated by it. For proper pharmacokinetics study, it is necessary to know both the rate and the extent to which the active substance or therapeutic moiety are absorbed. They include substances intended to produce / not produce systematic effects.

2. Distribution:
Distribution is the dispersion or dissemination of substances throughout the fluids and tissues of the body.

3. Metabolism:
Metabolism is the process whereby a substance is irreversibly transformed into metabolites.

4. Excretion:
Excretion is the elimination of the substance from the body. In rare cases, not all substances are eliminated; some drugs irreversibly accumulate in a tissue in the body.

Pharmacokinetics is often studied in conjunction with pharmacodynamics. While pharmacodynamics explores what a drug does to the body, pharmacokinetics studies what the body does to the drug.

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