Career as a Pharmacologist


Summary

Pharmacologists are the professionals who undertake the development of medicines or drugs by adopting in vitro or in vivo research. This means that the effects of the medicines of human bodies will be tested by applying those medicines on animal issues or animals respectively. These procedures should be conducted carefully and should be in compliance with all government norms and regulations.

Pharmacologists research, develop and test drugs (any chemicals that affects the body's functioning) and their effects on biological systems. They are primarily involved in finding new safe and effective medicines, though they may also test the safety of products such as pesticides, cosmetics and food additives. Once drugs have been administered, pharmacologists monitor test subjects, either humans or animals, to determine the drug's effectiveness and to check for side-effects. They are also interested in determining how drugs travel through a biological system, whether they have the potential to breakdown and form toxic chemicals and how long they remain in the system and in what concentration.

Pharmacologist record detailed notes during the research process and conduct quantitative analysis to determine how much of one substance is mixed with another. They develop and improve products.

Pharmacologist assist in the evaluation and marketing of drugs and related pharmaceutical products and liaise with government agencies concerning the detection, regulation and licensing of drugs and other pharmaceutical products. They conduct basic or clinical research in the laboratories of universities, hospitals, research institutes and private industries and also Train physicians, pharmacists, dentists, future pharmacologists and other health care professionals in universities or other post-secondary institutions.

Work Environment

Pharmacologists usually work in laboratories at universities, hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, factories or in some government departments. Work is often carried out in a sterile and controlled environment, to avoid contamination and to ensure that any effects can be attributed to the drug and not an external factor. Research into new drugs often involves the use of animals, which must follow strict ethical guidelines. Pharmacologists must keep detailed records of all their work to demonstrate that research and testing has been thorough and to ensure that results can be replicated. They usually work standard business hours, however evening and weekend work may be required, particularly when working to a deadline.

Entry Level Education

  • A Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) Degree in Pharmacology, or a related science such as Physiology or Biochemistry.
  • For Higher position a Master’s Degree or professional Degree and Doctorate in Pharmacology related field is needed.

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