Life Sciences

Cell Signalling and its Applications in Therapeutics and Disease

Module code: C7118
Level 6
15 credits in autumn teaching
Teaching method: Lecture, Class
Assessment modes: Unseen examination, Coursework

The aim of this module will be to discuss the major signalling pathways in cells and how perturbations of these can result in disease processes such as hypertension, cancer, gigantism, cholera, secretory diarrhea, polycystic kidney disease and septic shock.

The module will demonstrate how a knowledge of these pathways has led to the design and use of specific pharmacological agents to target these pathways for therapeutic intervention. The signalling pathways covered will include Ca2+, cyclic nucleotides, nitric oxide and guanylate cyclase, MAPK kinase pathways, PI-3-kinase and PKB, Jak/Stat pathways and integrins.

Module learning outcomes

  • Systematically discuss the major types of signalling pathways in the cell and explain in detail the mechanisms underlying the generation of the second messengers involved.
  • Discuss how these signalling pathways interact to produce a co-ordinated response to external stimuli within the body.
  • Show a critical appreciation of how dysregulation in these pathways results in the development of diseases such as cancer, hypertension, gigantism, cholera, and polycystic kidney disease.
  • Discuss how a knowledge of these pathways have allowed for the rational design of therapeutic agents to target these pathways in disease processes.