Kinetic efficiency: the missing metric for enhancing compound quality?

Drug Discov Today. 2011 Nov;16(21-22):910-3. doi: 10.1016/j.drudis.2011.09.006. Epub 2011 Sep 10.


The kinetics of ligand-target interactions have been recognised as being instrumental in dictating the efficacy of drug action. Increased focus on kinetic signatures in drug discovery has concincided with improvements in label free methodology for measuring kinetic parameters. Simultaneously, focus has also been applied to increasing the quality of compounds, in terms of their physicochemical properties. To facilitate this drive towards higher compound quality, metrics such as ligand efficiency and enthalpic efficiency have been employed. We propose another metric, kinetic efficiency, that may be used pragmatically to help identify those compounds displaying differentiated kinetic behaviour. The combination of these metrics has the potential to improve decision-making in drug discovery leading to higher quality compounds and series.

MeSH terms

  • Drug Compounding
  • Drug Discovery*
  • Efficiency*
  • Humans
  • Ligands
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy*
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations / metabolism
  • Pharmacokinetics*


  • Ligands
  • Pharmaceutical Preparations