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Understanding how drugs affect the body

All You Need To Know About Pharmacology

Have you ever wondered how the drug you take relieves your pain? Have you ever wanted to know the science behind what happens to the drug inside your body?

What is pharamacology?

Pharmacology is a branch of medicine and pharmaceutical sciences that deals with how a drug affects the biological system and how the body responds to the drug. Every medication administered alters the chemistry of our body. The role of pharmacology is to question why this course of action takes place and to help develop novel drugs. Pharmacology is often confused with Pharmacy but in fact, Pharmacology is a biomedical science that deals with research, discovery and identifies the correlation between an organism’s reaction and effects on the drug. Understanding how drugs interact with cellular targets allows pharmacologists to develop more selective drugs with fewer side effects. Pharmacy is an application of the knowledge learned through Pharmacology. A pharmacist is a licensed professional that dispenses and advises on medicinal drugs.

Career options available?

A pharmacology degree can offer careers in scientific areas like research or drug development or other fields such as patenting and teaching. Pharmacology majors are often considered as professionals that bridge the gap between science and the practice of medicine through innovative research and groundbreaking concepts.

Other job profiles include,

  • Biomedical scientist
  • Clinical research associate
  • Medicinal chemist
  • Pharmacologist
  • Scientific laboratory technician

How much can i make per annum?

Wages for pharmacology major graduates can differ based on the industry they work. The national average salary for a pharmacology major graduate is $72,926 per year (source – payscale) and this value varies based on experience.

Best places to work for?

  • US Food and Drug Administration
  • Novartis
  • Pfizer
  • Merck
  • GlaxoSmithKline
  • Gilead Sciences

Educational background required?

As pharmacology includes science subjects, choosing biology, chemistry and physics in high school will help one pass the entry level criterion required for a pharmacology major and in addition these subjects help in improving analytical thinking which will prove influential throughout the degree course.

The next step is a bachelor’s degree in pharmacology and in some cases a degree in biological sciences with programs in pharmacology. The subjects covered in this course includes biology, physics, chemistry, cell biology and physiology.

With a bachelor’s degree, there are many entry level job opportunities, but most pharmacological job opportunities are designed for those with graduate degrees. The preferred degrees are Masters of Science in Pharmacology and Ph.D. degrees in pharmacology. Some pharmacologists earn a medical degree in addition to a doctorate in biological science. 

Ideal study destinations?

  • USA
  • UK
  • Singapore
  • Australia

Is it useful?

Pharmacology is a discipline in itself but the major contains courses that inspire from physiology, anatomy, chemistry, molecular biology, and other similar areas. With the increase in understanding potential threats from unknown organisms, this major will prove to be lucrative in the near future.

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