What makes a good drug target?

Drug Discov Today. 2011 Dec;16(23-24):1037-43. doi: 10.1016/j.drudis.2011.09.007. Epub 2011 Sep 16.


Novel therapeutics in areas with a high unmet medical need are based on innovative drug targets. Although 'biologicals' have enlarged the space of druggable molecules, the number of appropriate drug targets is still limited. Discovering and assessing the potential therapeutic benefit of a drug target is based not only on experimental, mechanistic and pharmacological studies but also on a theoretical molecular druggability assessment, an early evaluation of potential side effects and considerations regarding opportunities for commercialization. This article defines key properties of a good drug target from the perspective of a pharmaceutical company.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Drug Delivery Systems / methods*
  • Drug Discovery / methods*
  • Drug Industry / methods*
  • Humans