A review of drug isomerism and its significance

Int J Appl Basic Med Res. 2013 Jan;3(1):16-8. doi: 10.4103/2229-516X.112233.

Abstract

Isomerism finds its importance in the field of clinical pharmacology and pharmacotherapeutics, as isomers differ in their pharmacokinetic and pharmacodyanmic properties. Drug isomerism has opened a new era of drug development. Currently, knowledge of isomerism has helped us in introducing safer and more effective drug alternatives of the newer as well as existing drugs. Many existing drugs have gone chiral switch i.e., switching from racemic mixture to one of its isomers. Cetrizine to levocetrizine is one of such examples, where effective and safer drug has been made available. In this article, we have attempted to review the basic concepts of stereochemistry and chirality and their significance in pharmacotherapeutics. Various pharmacological aspects such as pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic variations resulting out of chirality has been discussed in detail in this article.

Keywords: Enantiomer; enantiomorphs; enantiopure.