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Posts tagged with "Toxicology"

  • Clinical Trials

    Digging Into the Genetics of Drug Targets

    Rare diseases – remember years ago, back when those were a case of market failure? When companies were reluctant to work on them because the market size was guaranteed to be small and you’d have to charge, like, a hundred thousand or more a year to make the whole idea financially viable? Which wasn’t going… Read More
  • Cancer

    Why Not Target DNA? Well. . .

    There are all sorts of small-molecule drugs that bind to protein targets. Active sites of enzymes are, of course, a big subset of those, but there are plenty of enzymes whose allosteric sites are known to host synthetic ligands as well. Membrane receptor and ion channel proteins get both of those mechanisms too, and then… Read More
  • Infectious Diseases

    Fluoroquinolone Trouble Untangled

    The fluoroquinolone antibiotics are important drugs indeed – ciprofloxacin is probably the most famous of the bunch, but there’s a whole series of them, and they’re widely used for serious bacterial infections. (I last wrote about them here, with the various arguments about how they were developed in the first place). But for many… Read More
  • Drug Assays

    Tecfidera Explained

    One of the more unusual drugs on the market is Tecfidera (dimethyl fumarate). I went into its history a bit in this post, if you’re wondering how a molecule that small and unfunctionalized became a multiple sclerosis drug. As that shows, it went into trials for the disease with quite a bit of clinical rationale… Read More
  • Chem/Bio Warfare

    A Poisoning in England: But Which Poison?

    Chemistry doesn’t make the news as often as you might think, and when it does, it’s often in a grim way. Such is the case in the UK right now, with the poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal in Salisbury. For those who don’t know the background of the situation, Skripal was an officer in… Read More
  • Cardiovascular Disease

    Inhaled Nanoparticles – Good Ones, That Is

    Never give up on drug delivery ideas – that’s one of the big points I get out of this paper. The authors, part of a multi-center team from sites in Italy and Germany, have previously shown that calcium phosphate nanoparticles could be a good carrier for delicate cargo such as microRNAs. Such things tend to… Read More
  • Biological News

    Genetic Variation Gets More Real All the Time

    This study goes firmly into the file marked “You never could have done this one a few years ago, sonny”. We already know that there’s genetic variation in every population and in every individual. And we know that a large number of marketed drugs (about a third of them) target G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs). But… Read More
  • Animal Testing

    Melanocortin: It’s Not Just For Lizards Any More

    If you’re looking for a good example of evolution-as-a-tinkerer, the melanocortin receptors would be a good place to start. From a single starting point, they’ve ended up as a family of related proteins that do completely different things. And the hormones that bind to them have radiated out as well: they’re all derived by process… Read More
  • Clinical Trials

    When Small Trials Convince

    This is a good piece by Bruce Booth in Forbes, and it points out something that’s changing in the biopharma landscape. Readers will have noticed over the years here the occasional eye-rolling at companies that run underpowered clinical trials and go to the FDA hoping for the best. That’s not a good place to save… Read More
  • Clinical Trials

    Silicon Stays in the Shadows

    I like this review, but I’ve seen it before. Well, not this exact manuscript, but every few years it seems there’s another one with a similar title, something about “Incorporating Silicon Into Drug Structures”. I am guilty of the exact same thing, though: here’s a blog post from 2004 on the topic, and here’s one… Read More
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