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erlenmyer-research
Research group/lab

Pharmacy: Clinical Pharmacometrics

About our research group/lab

Our research

Prof. dr. Birgit CP Koch leads this research group of 15-20 PhD students (three finished), three postdoc and three research technicians. The focus of the group is on pharmacokinetics (PK) and pharmacodynamics (PD), Therapeutic Drug Monitoring (TDM), and the implementation of these research areas in clinical practice.

No two patients are identical, so individual drug dosing can lead to better treatment. This groups uses a PK/PD model to establish the relationship between drug dosage, drug concentration and drug effect. During the last ten years, they have organised the structure of the PK/PD and TDM laboratory and the PK/PD research group to conduct model-based dosing and bio-analysis, andimplement results in clinical practice. They use (non)compartmental (non-linear mixed) modelling to build the PK/PD models.

Targets for the future

From 'one dose fits all' to 'one dose fits one'

When it comes to traditional TDM and PK/PD and Model-based Dosing, pharmacotherapy is increasingly moving from a 'one size fits all' approach to personalised medicine (or precision medicine). Genetic information (germline DNA and tumour DNA) plays an important role in explaining between patient variability in drug response. However, the efficacy and toxicity of drug treatment can vary substantially even within groups of patients with the same genetic background. We are therefore integrating PK/PD and TDM in research and clinical patient work. 

Our laboratory has a track record in assay development. TDM is increasingly combined with Model-based Dosing. Population pharmacokinetic (PK) models aim to explain variability in pharmacokinetics through covariates such as body weight, age, renal function and co-medication. The use of iterative Bayesian methods to analyse individual patient data can help to define a dose recommendation with the highest likelihood of reaching the target concentration. Acceptance of Bayesian models for TDM is now increasing. The integration of outcome measures allows for PK/PD modelling, also referred to as pharmacometrics.

PK/PD modelling mathematically expresses the time course of the biological effect in response to drug concentration. To assess exposure/response relationships, a variety of PK/PD tools are currently being investigated (including target-mediated disposition models, allometric scaling and physiologically-based PK models. Investing in this part of our research will allow us to apply our existing expertise to different fields. 

In addition, we will develop real-time TDM together with technical universities and infection site measurements will be a new technique. Alternative matrices in general (as well as dried blood spots) will be covered in this research line.

 

Dr. Birgit Koch will lead this line. She was recently appointed as the new medical coordinator for research and teaching.

Key Publications

Our team