School of Chinese Medicine
Drug discovery is a risky, costly and time-consuming process depending on multidisciplinary methods to create safe and effective medicines. Although considerable progress has been made by high-throughput screening methods in drug design, the cost of developing contemporary approved drugs did not match that in the past decade. The major reason is the late-stage clinical failures in Phases II and III because of the complicated interactions between drug-specific, human body and environmental aspects affecting the safety and efficacy of a drug. There is a growing hope that systems-level consideration may provide a new perspective to overcome such current difficulties of drug discovery and development. The systems pharmacology method emerged as a holistic approach and has attracted more and more attention recently. The applications of systems pharmacology not only provide the pharmacodynamic evaluation and target identification of drug molecules, but also give a systems-level of understanding the interaction mechanism between drugs and complex disease. Therefore, the present review is an attempt to introduce how holistic systems pharmacology that integrated in silico ADME/T (i.e., absorption, distribution, metabolism, excretion and toxicity), target fishing and network pharmacology facilitates the discovery of small molecular drugs at the system level.
drug discovery, systems pharmacology, ADME/T, network pharmacology
Source Publication Title
International Journal of Molecular Sciences
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
Link to Publisher's Edition
Zhou, W., Wang, Y., Lu, A., & Zhang, G. (2016). Systems pharmacology in small molecular drug discovery. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 17 (2), 246. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17020246