Jonathan Sheng Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences

Pharmacokinetics is the science of drug (aka pharmaco-) transformation and movement (aka -kinetics) in the human body. It studies the kinetics of drug absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion. Its experimental and theoretical approaches involve analytical instrumentation and methodology, data collection and manipulation, mathematical model development and parameterization, and clinical interpretation and application. The study of pharmacokinetics is an important prerequisite for designing, predicating, modifying, and optimizing therapeutic dosing regimens for both individuals and groups of patients in today’s clinical practice.

The basic component of pharmacokinetics of the Doctor of Pharmacy curriculum is PS733, Basic Pharmacokinetics, a required course offered by the faculty of pharmaceutical sciences in the spring quarter of the P1 year. The prerequisite introductory courses include pathophysiology, biopharmaceutics, and pharmaceutical calculations.

There are a few tips for students who are going to take Basic Pharmacokinetics (PS733):

  • Create a learning strategy that fits your individual learning style.
  • Actively engage into the learning activities in-class and off-class.
  • Focus on the basic concepts, models, formulas, and clinical interpretation and applications.
  • During and after class, summarize the course materials, extract the take-home information, highlight the key points, and interlink the concepts.
  • For assignments with calculations, understand what the question and the required formulas are, know the units and conversions, and round the numeric results accordingly.
  • For multiple choice questions in exams and quizzes, if you are not sure, stick with your initial choice (via the second or third thoughts).  Also, check if your answer makes sense.
  • Lastly, here is a pop-up quiz question about pharmacokinetics for you with the answer that is located somewhere in this publication: Define and compare the concepts of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics.  

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