Period Oct 22 – Nov 9, 2012
Clinical pharmacology is the discipline involved in the research and development of (new) medicines. Over the last two decades the discipline has evolved considerably due to a couple of simultaneously occurring developments.
Each of these developments will be addressed in the course. It will for instance be reviewed why there has been an exponential increase in the identification of possible ‘drugable’ targets and why this has not necessarily translated into drug targets. Another interesting development is the greater emphasis on biomarkers to assess drug action in humans. This development, its advantages and its problems will be discussed. The role of pharmacogenetics and pharmacogenomics in current drug development as well as the exercises that are performed to link drug concentrations to drug effects will be addressed in this course. These developments will pave the road to the era of ‘personalized medicine’. This term has been coined to indicate personally tailored treatment to each individual patient. The aim of the course is gaining more insight in the application of novel techniques that are applied in pre-clinical and clinical drug research. Finally, the course aims to make the participants familiar with the current legal and regulatory requirements for drug research in humans.
The course program will consist of plenary (informative) lectures, workgroups, self-study assignments and a classroom experiment. In the latter the participants will perform a phenotyping and genotyping experiment to assess the metabolic capacity using their own body materials (buccal swab). Although some drugs and treatments of diseases will be discussed, the course will not emphasize on pharmacotherapeutics in a broad sense.