Physiology and Pharmacology

Module code: BS2013

This module is concerned with developing an understanding of the principles by which drugs affect the physiological function of individual cells that comprise organ systems such as the heart. You will study five topics:

  • Agonists, antagonists and pharmacokinetics.
  • Druggable targets and cell signalling
  • Adrenoceptors and applied pharmacology
  • Vascular physiology and pharmacology
  • Cardiac physiology and pharmacology

This module will provide a comprehensive introduction to human physiology and pharmacology at the molecular, cellular, tissue and systems level. This module begins with a background in the development of modern pharmacology, and will move onto the molecular mechanisms by which hormones, neurotransmitters and growth factors (agonists) regulate cell function with an emphasis on the cardiovascular and endocrine systems.

By gaining a deeper understanding of how drugs can either mimic or antagonise the effects of agonists you will gain an appreciation of the therapeutic basis for the treatment of disorder such as hypertension. The module also includes a practical component where computer simulations of pharmacological experiments are used to introduce the basic principles of pharmacology and the methodologies used to quantitate drug-receptor interactions. These studies are extended into the laboratory where you will be giving the opportunity to perform experiments to study to study the sites and mechanisms of drug action.