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Glossary

Pharmacology Key terms:
 
PHARMACOLOGY IS THE SCIENCE THAT DEALS WITH THE MECHANISM OF ACTION, USES, ADVERSE EFFECTS
AND FATE OF DRUGS IN ANIMALS AND HUMANS
 
 
 ACh (Acetylcholine): A neurotransmitter mainly used in parasympathetic neurotransmission.
 
Agonist: A ligand that binds to receptors, thus activating the receptor and causing a response.
 
Affinity: The ability of a drug to interact with its target.The greater the affinity, the greater the binding.
 
Antagonist: A ligand that binds to receptors and reduces the chance of an agonist binding, but which itself is unable to activate the receptor.
 
Beta-Blockers: Drugs which antagonize Beta-adrenergic receptors.
 
Bioavaliability: The amount of administered drug reaching its target.
 
cAMP (Cyclic adenosine monophosphate): A second messenger produced by conversion of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) by the enzyme adenyl cyclase.
 
Drug: A chemical that is administered with the intention of altering the physiology of the body for therapeutic purposes.
 
Efficacy: The ability of a drug to interact with its target and elicit a biological response.
 
Endogenous: Produced within the body.
 
Exogenous: Produced outside the body.

First pass metabolism: The phenomenon of a drug which is taken orally is absorbed through the intestinal wall, goes directly to the liver through the portal vein system and gets metabolised there before reaching the target organ. This is avoided by giving drugs other routes (e.g intramuscular, intravenous)

Ligand: A small molecule that binds to a specific site on a protein
 
Noradrenaline: A neurotrantransmitter mediating sympathetic neurotransmisson
 
Non-Steroidal anti inflammatory Drug (NSAID): A drug used in the treatment of inflammation and mild pain.
 
Partial Agonist: A ligand that can activate a receptor but cannot bring about a maximum response despite occupying all receptors.
 
Pharmacodynamics: The effect of the drug on the body
 
Pharmacokinetics: How the body affects the drug. How the drug is administered, distributed, metabolised and excreted (ADME)
 
Potent: A drug that is powerful in its action
 
Potency : Term for comparing efficacies of two or more drugs that work via the same receptor or through the same mechanism of action.
 
Receptor: A molecule on the surface of a cell that serves as a recognition or binding site for antigens, antibodies, or other cellular or immunological components, resulting in a change in the activity of the cell.
 
Selectivity: The ability of a drug to affect a particular population of targets in preference to others.
 
Specificity: The ability of the drug to affect a specific function at its site of function
 
Therapeutics: A branch of medicine concerned with the remedial treatment of disease- the art of healing
 
 
 
 
REFERENCES
 

Gada, Y., Horton-Szar, D., (25 Jul 2007). Crash course Pharmacology, 3rd Edition, Mosby Elsevier

Pharmacology 1st Year Lectures- Drugs and Therapeutics

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