ROLE OF A PHARMACOLOGIST<br /> BY : Dr. HARMANJIT SINGH <br /> POST-GRADUATE STUDENT<br /> DEPTT. OF PHARMACOLOGY<br /> GMC, PATIALA<br /> Pharmacologist <br />A Pharmacologist is a scientist, primarily occupied with research, <br />although teaching medical students is often a part of the job description.<br /> A Pharmacologist works or has experience working in a laboratory <br />performing research.<br /> Since the introduction of formal medical education in India, pharmacologists in<br /> both medical institutions and industrial organizations have had two basic <br />functions. <br />These are teaching and research.<br /> <br />Pharmacologists have not played an active role in the delivery of patient care.<br /> In addition, they have not been involved in deciding the national drug policy or in <br />the planning of various health programmes.<br /> Roles : Various roles of a Pharmacologist are :<br /> • Medical Education<br /> • Research<br /> • Regulatory Affairs<br /> • Community Pharmacology<br /> • Social Responsibilities<br /> <br /> Medical Education<br /> <br />Has important role in teaching program of <br /> <br /> • Undergraduates : <br /> <br /><ul><li>Medical and Dental.</li></ul> • Postgraduates : <br /><ul><li>Teaching program of PGs
and timely submission of thesis</li></ul> <br /> • Paramaedics : e.g Nursing students , Phrmacy students<br /><ul><li>- Pharmacologists have a well defined role in teaching centres</li></ul> - Introduce the concept of rational drug use and essential drugs .<br />- Introduction of the students with various drugs , their effects , their <br /> toxicity , interactions and potential uses.<br /><ul><li>Students must be trained not only in the effects of drugs , their toxicity,
c) administer the drug through the appropriate route.
d) identify adverse drug reactions and drug interactions
Research</li></ul> A pharmacologist has very important role in <br /> • Basic Research<br /> • Clinical Research (Clinical Pharmacology)<br /> - Essential part of clinical trials<br /> - Integral part of Institutional Ethics Committees<br /> - Ensure adherence to GCP Guidelines<br /> - Therapeutic Drug Monitoring<br /> - Interpretation of clinical trial results<br /><ul><li>Pharmaceutical companies, research and development
divisions employ numerous pharmacologists, both non-clinical and
clinical :-</li></ul> <br /><ul><li>To conduct Research prior to approval of a drug and afterwards.
The integrative approach, which is based on an in-depth knowledge
of pharmacological principles, drug–target interactions and drug
effects in an intact organism, is still the basis of successful drug
discovery today and will remain so for the foreseeable future.</li></ul>Regulatory Affairs<br />• Essential Drugs Concept<br />- formulation and implementation of ESSENTIAL DRUG LIST<br />• Formulation of National Drug Policy <br />• Monitors and Auditors for ClinicalTrials<br />• Drug Authority <br /> <br />• Knowledge about IND, NDA applications and patent law guidelines<br /> Community Pharmacology<br /> • Pharmacoeconomics<br /> - Cost effective analysis of great value<br /> - To alter prescribing habits of Physicians<br />- Ensure availability of safe, cheap and effective drugs for<br /> <br /> The community<br /> • Pharmacovigilance<br /> - reporting of ADRs<br /> - Important channel of feedback to the industry<br /> - PV is an effort towards making drugs more safe<br /> • Hospital Pharmacologist<br /> - Ensures rational use of drugs in hospital<br /> - Teaches rational drug use at all levels<br /> - Assists the hospital in meeting regulatory needs<br /> <br /> - Keeps an eye over the adverse drug reactions and<br /> <br /> possible drug drug interactions of the various drugs<br /> used in hospital set up.<br /> <br /> As a Toxicologist <br />Toxicology is frequently called "
. <br /> As Toxicologists deal with drugs, they are primarily concerned with the <br />toxic effects of drugs.<br /> Much of toxicology is considered a subset of pharmacology because<br /> the basic science of pharmacology is used for toxicology. <br />Thus the field of toxico-kinetics is based on pharmacokinetics;<br /> the dose - response relationships for toxic actions obey similar laws <br /> as for thereapeutic actions.<br />Toxicologists also may serve as Expert Witnesses in legal<br /> matters testifying as to the side effects and adverse reactions to <br /> drugs.<br /> - Has the best knowledge of drug’s effects and toxicity profiles.<br />- So a pharmacologist is of immense value to the community by the virtue <br /> of training best suited for this job <br />Other Roles In Community Pharmacology<br /> <br />Pharmacologists are the most appropriate people for physician education<br /><ul><li> Rational Drug Use
Unbiased and scientific knowledge about new drugs</li></ul>- Recognition and reporting of Adverse Drug Reactions<br />- Value and role of conducting a Drug Audit<br /><ul><li>Role of generic prescribing
Educating about reliability and authenticity</li></ul> of drug promotional literature <br /> <br /><ul><li> AS A PHYSICIAN
A pharmacologist holds the thorough knowledge of drugs.
He has the best knowledge about the effects , adverse effects and
He can apply this knowledge to treat various diseases in a community.</li></ul> <br />Social Responsibility<br />• A social responsibility to educate the Community<br />•Rationality and safety of various OTC preparations <br />• Rationality of combination drug products<br />• Check on various unethical drug advertisement practices<br />Social Pharmacology : a new field in Clinical Pharmacology, describes the <br /> relationships between Society and Drugs.<br /><ul><li>Social Pharmacologist investigates the reasons for prescription, delivery, </li></ul> consumption and self-medication of drugs.<br /><ul><li>Social Pharmacologists also investigate the factors (others than clinical or </li></ul> rational) regulating drug use.<br /><ul><li>The role of the Social Pharmacologist is to identify the social and irrational </li></ul>factors governing drug use in order to adapt and rationalize drug utilization <br /> in daily clinical practice.<br />Interactions between Pharmacologists and other Scientists / Healthcare Professionals<br /><ul><li>In the context of a pharmaceutical company, pharmacologists are
Physicians often regard themselves as qualified to fulfill the role of
Pharmacologist, which may or may not be justified.
Pharmacologists and Pharmacists rarely encounter one another
professionally</li></ul> Future prospects<br /> • Pharmacology and Biotechnology<br /> • Expertise in Medical Writing<br /> • Translational Research<br /> <br /> The pharmaceutical industry in the 21st century needs more well-<br /> trained pharmacologists in order to be successful and translate the<br /> information provided by the Human Genome Project into advances in <br /> healthcare. Pharmacologists who have had:<br /><ul><li>The holistic training necessary to enable translation from gene to organism
(ii) Practical training in a wide range of pharmacological
techniques and new technologies</li></ul> (iii) In vivo skills; and<br /> (iv) A quantitative approach to their research are needed. <br /><ul><li> There are already excellent examples of partnerships </li></ul> between industry and academia to support the training and <br /> development of the next generation of pharmacologists for <br /> drug discovery. We need to continue to build these partnerships to <br /> ensure pharmaceutical industry continues to be at the forefront of drug <br /> discovery during the coming years. <br /> To summarize:<br /><ul><li>Pharmacologist has very important role in teaching