Antimalarial drugs have played a mainstream role in controlling the spread of malaria through the treatment of patients infected with the plasmodial parasites and controlling its transmissibility. The inadequate armory of drugs in widespread use for the treatment of malaria, development of strains resistant to currently used antimalarials, and the lack of affordable new drugs are the limiting factors in the fight against malaria. In addition, other problems with some existing agents include unfavorable pharmacokinetic properties and adverse effects/toxicity. These factors underscore the continuing need of research for new classes of antimalarial agents, and a re-examination of the existing antimalarial drugs that may be effective against resistant strains. In recent years, major advances have been made in the pharmacology of several antimalarial drugs both in pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics aspects. These include the design, development, and optimization of appropriate dosage regimens of antimalarials, basic knowledge in metabolic pathways of key antimalarials, as well as the elucidation of mechanisms of action and resistance of antimalarials.
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