Enzyme Inhibition

Consequences of inhibiting drug metabolism can be more profound than those of enzyme induction. Effects of enzyme inhibition by drugs also tend to be more selective than those of enzyme induction. Consequently, enzyme inhibition offers more scope for therapy (see Table 7.4).

Enzyme inhibition by drugs is also the basis of a number of clinically important drug interactions (see p. 133).


Drugs are eliminated from the body after being partly or wholly converted to water-soluble metabolites or, in some cases, without being metabolised. To avoid repetition the following account refers to drug whereas the processes deal with both drug and its metabolites.

TABLE 7.4 Some drugs Chat act by enzyme inhibition


Enzyme inhibited

Treatment oi


carbonic anhydrase



xanthine oxidase



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