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Pharmaceutical Research

, 36:148 | Cite as

Medications in Space: In Search of a Pharmacologist’s Guide to the Galaxy

  • Sara EyalEmail author
  • Hartmut Derendorf
Expert Review
  • 95 Downloads
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Medicines in Space

Abstract

Medications have been used during space missions for more than half a century, yet our understanding of the effects of spaceflight on drug pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics is poor. The space environment induces time-dependent alterations in human physiology that include fluid shifts, cardiovascular deconditioning, bone and muscle density loss, and impaired immunity. This review presents the current knowledge on the physiological effects of spaceflight that can translate into altered drug disposition and activity and eventually to inadequate treatment. It describes findings from studies in astronauts along with mechanistic studies in animal models and in vitro systems. Future missions into deeper space and the emergence of commercial spaceflight will require a more detailed understanding of space pharmacology to optimize treatment in astronauts and space travelers.

Keywords

international space station microgravity pharmacokinetics pharmacodynamics spaceflight 

Abbreviations

ABC

Adenosine triphosphate binding cassette

Cmax

Peak concentration

CSF

Cerebrospinal fluid

CYP

Cytochrome P450

GFR

Glomerular filtration rate

GST

Glutathione sulfur transferase

ISS

International Space Station

MRP

Multidrug resistance-associated protein

NASA

National Aeronautics and Space Administration

PBPK

Physiologically based pharmacokinetic

P-gp

P-glycoprotein

Tmax

Time to peak concentration

USP

United States Pharmacopeia

Notes

Acknowledgments and Disclosures

No financial support was received for this study.

Sara Eyal is affiliated with the David R. Bloom Centre for Pharmacy and Dr. Adolf and Klara Brettler Centre for Research in Molecular Pharmacology and Therapeutics at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Sara Eyal is on sabbatical leave at SpacePharma, Israel, from July 1st 2019.

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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for Drug Research, School of Pharmacy, Faculty of MedicineThe Hebrew University of JerusalemJerusalemIsrael
  2. 2.Department of PharmaceuticsUniversity of FloridaFloridaUSA

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