Secondary Logo

Journal Logo

Institutional members access full text with Ovid®


Recognizing the Importance of Timing Factors in the Treatment of Disease and Sleep Disorders

Zaki, Nevin F. W., MD*; Yousif, Maha, MD; BaHammam, Ahmed S., MD; Spence, David Warren, MA§; Bharti, Vijay K., MVSc, PhD; Subramanian, Perumal, PhD; Pandi-Perumal, Seithikurippu R., MSc#

doi: 10.1097/WNF.0000000000000341
Review Article

This review describes the characteristics of a number of pathologies, which are considered from the point of view of chronobiology, that is, the way in which biological processes are expressed throughout the 24-hour day. This perspective is a relatively new way of thinking about disease and additionally about how to treat diseases. It has called attention to the importance of not only the quantity of a drug that is administered but also when it is administered. In addition, the review presents an overview of the emerging clinical strategies known as chronotherapeutics, that is, the effects of the daily scheduling of drug administration and the consequences of the activity and efficacy of therapies that are applied in this manner. This article also reviews innovative ways in which physicians are applying time-specified drug treatment (chronopharmacology) for sleep disorders. Here, we present a systematic description of chronopharmacology as well as definitions of key terms that, we believe, will be helpful for newcomers to the field. It is hoped that greater awareness of this new perspective on pharmacology will promote its adoption by researchers and clinicians.

*Department of Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, Mansoura University, Mansoura;

Department of Chest Diseases, Faculty of Medicine, Menoufia University, Shebin Elkom, Egypt;

The University Sleep Disorders Center, Department of Medicine, College of Medicine, King Saud University, and Strategic Technologies Program of the National Plan for Sciences, Technology, and Innovation, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia;

§652 Dufferin Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada;

Nutrition and Toxicology Laboratory, Defence Institute of High Altitude Research (DIHAR), Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO), Ministry of Defence, Leh;

Department of Biochemistry and Biotechnology, Faculty of Science, Annamalai University, Chidambaram, Tamil Nadu, India; and

#Somnogen Canada Inc, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Seithikurippu R. Pandi-Perumal, MSc, Somnogen Canada Inc, College St, Toronto, ON M6H 1C5, Canada; E-mail:

Conflicts of Interest and Source of Funding: The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.

Copyright © 2019 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.