Explanation of terms used by DrugBank


Drug target

A protein, macromolecule, small molecule, etc. to which a given drug binds or otherwise interacts with, resulting in an alteration of the normal function of the bound molecule and desirable therapeutic effects or unwanted adverse effects. Some common examples of drug targets include macromolecules like nucleic acids and proteins such as enzymes, ion channels, and receptors. Drugs can be either naturally or synthetically designed to specifically interact with such entities as targets.

Each target in DrugBank is considered a [bio entity] and is associated with a unique identification code that starts with “BE”. For example, the code for the Histamine H1 receptor as a target is BE0000442.

Note that targets, enzymes, carriers, and transporters may switch roles depending on the drug to which they bind based on each drug's unique pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic profiles.