Olfactory drug effects approached from human-derived data

Drug Discov Today. 2015 Nov;20(11):1398-406. doi: 10.1016/j.drudis.2015.06.012. Epub 2015 Jul 6.


The complexity of the sense of smell makes adverse olfactory effects of drugs highly likely, which can impact a patient's quality of life. Here, we present a bioinformatics approach that identifies drugs with potential olfactory effects by connecting drug target expression patterns in human olfactory tissue with drug-related information and the underlying molecular drug targets taken from publically available databases. We identified 71 drugs with listed olfactory effects and 147 different targets. Taking the target-based approach further, we found additional drugs with potential olfactory effects, including 152 different substances interacting with genes expressed in the human olfactory bulb. Our proposed bioinformatics approach provides plausible hypotheses about mechanistic drug effects for drug discovery and repurposing and, thus, would be appropriate for use during drug development.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Computational Biology / methods
  • Drug Design*
  • Drug Discovery / methods
  • Drug-Related Side Effects and Adverse Reactions / etiology
  • Gene Expression Regulation / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy*
  • Olfactory Bulb / drug effects
  • Olfactory Bulb / physiology
  • Olfactory Perception / drug effects*
  • Olfactory Perception / genetics
  • Quality of Life