Core Module Information
Module title: Current Practice in Drug Development

SCQF level: 11:
SCQF credit value: 20.00
ECTS credit value: 10

Module code: BMS11104
Module leader: David Mincher
School School of Applied Sciences
Subject area group: Microbiology & Drug Discovery

There are no pre-requisites for this module to be added

Description of module content:

You will develop a demonstrable understanding of the principles of drug development at the molecular level and the practices currently adopted in industry. You will focus on the historical origins of existing drugs and contemporary methods being used to develop new ones. You will learn to appraise and analyse physical parameters and data on drug candidate molecules. Industry-modelled case studies, individual and group activities will enhance your presentational and organizational skills to achieve competency in workshop preparation and delivery; and in writing scientific research reviews.
Origins and new sources of drugs; natural products and new pharmaceuticals; the drug discovery and development process. Molecular modelling. Stereochemistry: a source of problems in medicinal chemistry. Structure-based drug design; pharmacophore-based drug design; QSAR. Physicochemical properties and drug design: electronic factors, lipophilicity, partition coefficient, steric parameters, prediction of drug-receptor interactions, ligand binding studies. Drug formulation, prodrugs. Computational techniques: analysis of conformational space, molecular graphics and the visualisation of molecules. Molecular diversity. Combinatorial libraries and modern methods of synthesis. Current approaches to the chemotherapeutic treatment of (selected) diseases: cardiovascular disease, inflammation, cancer, viral- and bacterial- infection, diabetes, asthma, cognitive disorders. Patent application procedures and IP maintenance; legislation.

Learning Outcomes for module:

LO1: Evaluate contemporary principles and methodologies in the drug design and development process.
LO2: Appraise and analyse the physicochemical parameters underpinning drug development.
LO3: Analyse data from case studies and research publications.
LO4: Critically review the chemistry of and target validation for selected classes of leading drugs.
LO5: Appraise the implementation of patent application procedures, IP maintenance and legislation.

Full Details of Teaching and Assessment
2021/2, Trimester 1, FACE-TO-FACE, Edinburgh Napier University
Occurrence: 001
Primary mode of delivery: FACE-TO-FACE
Location of delivery: SIGHTHILL
Partner: Edinburgh Napier University
Member of staff responsible for delivering module: David Mincher
Module Organiser:

Learning, Teaching and Assessment (LTA) Approach:
Lectures cover LOs 1, 2, 4, 5. Tutorials and workshops cover LOs 1 – 5. Lectures will afford students with central information and present contemporary examples of scientific practices in the pharmaceutical industry and stimulate interest and independent learning activities. Guest lecturers will give further insights into key factors supporting the development of new pharmaceuticals (LO5). Proprietary drug design software will be used as a teaching tool and in student-centred learning activities.

Workshop group exercises are designed to simulate methodology used in the pharmaceutical industry and, in conjunction with the tutorial programme allow students the opportunity to solve problems individually and in team exercises. IT skills and software competence, critical thinking and critical appraisal, communication and organisational skills are systemically embedded. Assessments and case studies address scientific writing, data analysis and presentation as individual pieces of work or as a team exercise. The module is designed to emphasize that progress in drug design is intrinsically research-driven. The module is delivered by research-aware and research-active staff, supported by industry-based research expertise. Students are given instruction on Literature searching; database mining and directed research article reading and evaluation. Students will be made aware of and encouraged to consider the commonality and specific differences in the execution of drug design, drug synthesis and manufacture and codes of practice between the UK and Europe and other countries including the USA and other major pharmaceutical markets which are important for those working in what is intrinsically a global industry.

The module is supported by a VLE (Moodle) which is used to provide class materials (including lectures, tutorials, and workshops), resources such as animations, videos, direct links to relevant web-based resources, e:submission of coursework, self-assessment tests, interactive teaching resources, and independent study materials to cover expected prior-learning.

Formative Assessment:
Provision is made for formative feedback in the tutorials and practical workshop group sessions in which simulated drug development problems are solved using a combination of data analysis, case study, molecular modelling and allied software applications; mechanisms are built in that allow time for reflection and revision of solutions to problems, presentation of findings and peer contributions (LO2 , LO3). Feedforward examples to support the review article assessment are also provided.

Summative Assessment:
Summative assessment is provided for in a class test (LOs 1, 2, 4 & 5) and by a (written) review article (Monitor Article) (LOs 1, 3, 4) in which the student critically reviews (to publication standards) the current status, design and development of agents directed to selected disease states, in which there is demonstrated extensive literature survey.

Student Activity (Notional Equivalent Study Hours (NESH))
Mode of activityLearning & Teaching ActivityNESH (Study Hours)
Face To Face Lecture 30
Face To Face Tutorial 9
Independent Learning Guided independent study 161
Total Study Hours200
Expected Total Study Hours for Module200

Type of Assessment Weighting % LOs covered Week due Length in Hours/Words
Report 50 1,3,4 9 HOURS= 0, WORDS= 2500
Class Test 50 1, 2, 4 & 5 13 HOURS= 2.5, WORDS= 0
Component 1 subtotal: 50
Component 2 subtotal: 50
Module subtotal: 100

Indicative References and Reading List - URL:
Contact your module leader