Prof. Dr. Arpad Tosaki
University of Debrecen Helath Science Center School of Pharmacy Debrecen HUNGARY
This book was written to provide students, researchers and educators with a user-friendly tool for keeping pace with rapidly evolving drug discovery initiatives. The primarycontent is based on the pharmacotherapy of various diseases, which has been an enormouslyrewarding and fascinating adventure. In addition, the content is also based on my research andteaching experience during the 3 decades prior to this writing in Hungary, England, France,and United States of America, which has been an enormously rewarding and fascinatingadventure. Use of pharmacological agents to prevent or mitigate disease is an ancient skillmaintained during the entire history of all human societies in various forms. Hunter-gatherercommunities each developed culturally unique uses for plant, mineral and animal resourceslocally available to populations in need that evolved into sophisticated and increasinglyefficacious medical traditions that persist to this day. The progressive integration of medicaltraditions into written record allowed evolution of progressively powerful pharmacologybased increasingly on analysis of clinically valid precedent. As understanding of themolecular-biological basis of diseases, drug design has become progressively driven byconsideration of how specific biochemical interactions may be modulated to achievetherapeutic endpoints. Of particular interest in this respect, is identification of compoundscapable of modifying critical ligand-receptor interactions, enzyme activities and other eventsin cellular signaling pathways that lead to enhancement or inhibition of major symptoms ofvarious diseases. Most descriptions of drug mechanisms given in this book focus on howsmall-molecule drugs affect specific molecular targets to alter well-defined aspects of cellularphysiology in ways that in most cases are expected to result in improved prognosis of selecteddisorders. In this respect, the book reflects “orthodoxy” of strategic thinking in thepharmaceutical industry, which favors single site-acting “magic bullet” compounds that maybe highly effective in some treatment venues, but are highly toxic, often costly and provide2only transitory remediation to serious chronic illness. A particularly exciting subject areacovered in this book is a description of novel treatment strategies that prevent or mitigateserious diseases, particularly those with underlying inflammatory etiology, by strengtheningnatural host immunoregulatory mechanisms, rather than intervening in activity of hosthomeostasis. It is an honor and a pleasure to participate in the medical revolution, of whichthis book is a vanguard.