310_4_notes - Lecture #4 Outline Pharmaceutical Sciences...

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Lecture #4 Outline Pharmaceutical Sciences 310 Introduction to Pharmacology: Drugs and Their Actions Lecture #4: How do drugs act? lecturer: Arash Bashirullah The overall goal of this lecture is to understand how drugs exert their effects on the body. The lecture is divided into two broad sections: one dealing with the interactions between drugs and their physiological targets of action (receptors) and the other describing the relationships between drug doses and their physiological effects. Section I: PHARMACODYNAMICS Pharmacodynamics is the study of what drugs do to the body, addressing how drugs act and carry out their physiological responses. Essentially, drugs have an effect in the body because they act somewhere, that somewhere is called a drug target. Drug targets are usually cellular proteins with important functions. When a drug binds its target, it changes the way the target carries out its function, thereby resulting in a physiological effect. 1.- receptors Receptors are proteins on the surface of (or within) a cell that provides the site(s) where biologically active, naturally-occurring, endogenous compounds induce their normal biological effects. Essentially, receptors are the sense organs of the cell: cellular antennas that receive and transduce signals coming from outside the cell. We will focus on receptors because the targets of most psychoactive drugs are proteins that function as receptors. 2.- ligands Ligands are usually small, diffusible compounds that bind to a receptor and elicit a response. Within the nervous system, neurons use many different types of these small molecules to communicate with each other. These neuronally-released ligands are called neurotransmitters, each binding their corresponding receptor (more about neurotransmitters in future lectures).
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This note was uploaded on 03/25/2010 for the course PHARM 310 taught by Professor Marker during the Spring '10 term at Wisconsin.

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310_4_notes - Lecture #4 Outline Pharmaceutical Sciences...

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