Breaking down the complex subject of pharmacokinetics

Get a good grasp of the key components of pharmacokinetics with this book.

‘Essential pharmacokinetics: a primer for pharmaceutical scientists’, by Thorsteinn Loftsson

‘Essential pharmacokinetics’ is the second of Thorsteinn Loftsson’s Academic Press books targeted at pharmaceutical scientists (the previous one having looked at the principles of drug stability). Loftsson aims to break down the principles of a complex subject into manageable sections, providing a valuable introductory reference book.

The book looks at the principles of bioavailability, the pertinent physicochemical properties of drugs, and routes of administration beyond intravenous and oral. As would be expected for a pharmacokinetics textbook, a large portion is dedicated to mathematical equations, which are presented step-by-step with explanatory notes and context. The book is of most value when time is taken to work through the equations presented; a manageable task, given that it is a relatively short book.

Figures are employed to good use to illustrate the complex concepts addressed. By the end of the book, the reader should have a good grasp of the components of pharmacokinetics. Of particular value are practice questions and answers, using real-world examples, which could be used for self-learning or for teaching. With pharmaceutical scientists as its target audience, the book does assume some prior knowledge, and so is most suitable for graduate students or researchers. However, the practice questions may prove a useful advanced learning tool for undergraduate pharmacy students studying pharmacokinetics.


‘Essential pharmacokinetics: a primer for pharmaceutical scientists’, by Thorsteinn Loftsson. Pp vii+170 £48.99. London: Academic Press; 2015. ISBN 978 0 12 801411 0

Last updated
The Pharmaceutical Journal, PJ, 5 September 2015, Vol 295, No 7878;295(7878):DOI:10.1211/PJ.2015.20068930