Drug Designing Process

With the new age and latest technology there is an endless quest for new drugs and treatments methods to cure almost all diseases even attempts to cure deadliest of the diseases. The process to identify a potential new medicines for cure is called drug designing.

Drug is either base biological or derived chemical substance that has physiological or biochemical effect on the body. All drugs are directed to a target that is to be remedied. Drugs interact with these targets to modify their activity either stimulating or blocking it resulting in healing. Majority of times these drug targets are proteins and sometimes are DNA/RNA. Based on the knowledge of the target intervening new medications can be found.

During drug design molecules are designed such that they complement the shape and size of the bimolecular target. This way while interacting with the target the drug will bind with it.

Drug design can be

  • Computer-aided drug design where computer modeling techniques are used
  • Structure-based drug design where knowledge of 3D structure of bimolecular structure is used

The process of developing a drug is lengthy and expensive. It may take two decades for the drug to be developed from scratch and then bring to the market having made it safe for use and overcoming all regulatory hurdles. Here are the stages through which a drug design process goes:

  • Drug Discovery:
     Thousands of targets are tested with variety of chemical compound to identify new drug-target combination
  • Pre-clinical testing:
     Tests how best the drugs are absorbed, distributed and then removed from the body. It helps check if the drug is serving the intended purpose and has the expected effect on the body in the process of healing. Drugs that pass this test are submitted to regulatory authorities to check on the acceptability of the compound used before passing to clinical development.
  • Clinical development/Clinical trails
     The drug is tested on human volunteers to monitor the effectiveness and safety of the drug.

The process may be repeated iteratively to better the medicine giving chance for all considerations and then the medicine/drug is got into the market. Developments in information technology and revolution in proteomics and genomics has paved the way for rapid discovery of new drug front.


Originally published at blog.insidedna.me on March 16, 2017.