Life Sciences

Cell Regulation and Cancer

Module code: C7108
Level 5
15 credits in autumn teaching
Teaching method: Lecture, Class
Assessment modes: Unseen examination, Coursework

This module aims to introduce you to the mechanisms by which cell metabolism and growth is regulated in normal and diseased states, focussing on cancer.

You cover cell regulation at the level of single cells and the body as a whole and will discuss the major signal transduction pathways used by hormones, neurotransmitters and growth factors to control cell growth and metabolism in the normal state and also the use of pharmacological agents to discriminate between receptor subtypes.

This will lead to a discussion of how loss of control of these signalling pathways by the generation of oncogenes or changes in tumour suppressor genes leads to alterations in the cell cycle and the development of cancer.

You review the difference between normal and transformed cells, the altered signal transduction mechanisms and the epidemiology, incidence and mortality in different cancers.

Module learning outcomes

  • Demonstratean in depth knowledge of the molecular mechanisms by which metabolic pathways can be controlled via intracellular and extracellular homeostatic mechanisms using muscle contraction and glycogen metabolism as examples
  • Summarise the major signalling pathways by which hormones and other effectors elicit an intracellular response
  • Show an appreciation of the characteristics of normal and transformed cells
  • Critically discuss the concept of growth control and how its loss results in the development of cancer