Molecular and Cellular Pharmacology, Vol 2, No 1 (2010)

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DrugBank: A General Resource for Pharmaceutical and Pharmacological Research

David S. Wishart


DrugBank ( is an open-access, electronic drug database that integrates detailed drug data with comprehensive drug target and drug action information. First released in 2006 and updated on a regular basis every 6 to 12 months, DrugBank has become a very popular resource for medicinal chemists, bioinformaticians, cheminformaticians, pharmacists and physicians. Part of its appeal seems to lie in its rich data content along with the fact that all of its data is freely downloadable. Each drug entry in DrugBank contains more than 100 data fields with approximately half of the information being devoted to chemical or physico-chemical data about the drug and the other half devoted to molecular pharmacological, pharmacogenomic and biological data. DrugBank also catalogues information on food-drug interactions, drug-drug interactions, drug metabolism, drug metabolizing enzymes, adverse drug reactions and drug-target single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). In addition to its rich data content, DrugBank also offers a number of powerful search utilities including chemical structure similarity searches, sequence similarity searches and advanced text queries. These search routines offer users a convenient route to explore complex pharmacological and pharmacogenomic questions in silico. This paper provides a general overview of DrugBank and describes how it can serve as a general resource for pharmacological, pharmacogenomic and pharmaceutical research.

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