Models for success: improving drug metabolism prediction

Oct 14, 2023

Models for success: improving drug metabolism prediction


Out now in Drug Target Review, Optibrium’s Director of Computational Chemistry, Dr Peter Hunt discusses why early in silico metabolism prediction is crucial to mitigate the problem of clinical-stage drug failures. He shares insights on in silico modelling methods and how you can ensure a smooth transition from preclinical to clinical analysis. The article also talks through a real-world example where early stage modelling could have saved huge expense and effort.



Approximately 40% of drug failures at the clinical stage are due to ADMET issues1. These failures are often due to problems around drug metabolism, including poor metabolic stability resulting in low bioavailability of the active compound, unforeseen drug-drug interactions or the formation of reactive or toxic metabolites causing adverse side effects. To overcome these issues and avoid wasting time and money in fruitless experimental trials, early in silico metabolism prediction is crucial.



Dr Peter Hunt, Director of Computational Chemistry. Optibrium.

Peter trained as a synthetic organic chemist, gaining a degree and PhD at Imperial College, University of London. He moved into the computational chemistry field during a postdoc at the 3D Centre in Australia, focusing on peptidomimetic design to address HIV protease inhibition and mimicry of bioactive peptides such as the conotoxins. He returned to the UK in 1994 to join the CADD group of Merck & Co Inc and then moved to Novartis 2006. Prior to joining Optibrium in 2014, Peter lead the UK CADD group efforts in drug discovery and development research in the neuroscience, respiratory and gastrointestinal disease areas. He is an inventor on over 20 patents, as well as a former chair of the TRIPOS User group and Secretary of the UK-QSAR committee.


1] Kola I, Landis J. Can the pharmaceutical industry reduce attrition rates? Nat. Rev. Drug Discov. 2004 Aug;3(8):711–6.

Want more information?

You can hear more from us in our webinars. For example: