Drug Function and Drug Discovery
Drugs are essential tools used in medicine to treat diseases or their symptoms. Drugs are any substances that produce a physiological change in an organism. These substances can be artificial or naturally occurring.
By identifying the active substances in traditional remedies, new drugs were discovered in the past. Nowadays, large compound libraries are screened for potential drugs. A method, often used in generating new antibiotics, is the creation of derivates of existing drugs. When discovering new drugs, they have to be approved in clinical trials.
The availability of efficient chemical processes for synthesizing various kind of substances and biotechnological techniques for genetic engineering has considerably increased the drug availability.
Although they are designed for medical use, drugs are important agents for research. Examples used in research are tacrolimus, dexamethasone, isoflurane, xylazine or ketamine.
In the laboratory, drugs can be used to create pathological conditions in animal models or for surgery purposes. Furthermore, they can be applied to stimulate different signaling pathways at various stages of the cascade. In cell culture, drugs can often be added directly to the culture medium to study their effects.
If you are looking for antibiotics or inhibitors, please refer to the related category.