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Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Analyses in Pharmacology, Immunology and Microbiology
Module Code BE403
School School of Biotechnology
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Konstantinos Gkrintzalis
Semester 2: Konstantinos Gkrintzalis
Autumn: Konstantinos Gkrintzalis
Module TeachersPaul Cahill
Denis Collins
Denise Harold
Konstantinos Gkrintzalis
NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 5
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None
Repeat examination
A re-sit exam for both components should be available for failing students.

The purpose of this module is to provide students with a basic understanding of pharmacology, and in particular the area of bio-pharmacology. In this module, students will examine the modern-day analytical methods used in the pharmaceutical industry in the production and validation of biological molecules such as recombinant proteins and antibodies. Students will also explore the downstream implementation and integration of these molecules across a number of innovative and ground-breaking diagnostic and therapeutic applications.

Learning Outcomes

1. Differentiate between chemical/pharma and biopharma/biologics drug analysis
2. Illustrate advanced bioanalytical techniques for pharma/biopharma separations
3. Understand the approaches and theory behind conventional proteomic analysis
4. Understand the use and application of antibodies in modern-day bio-analytical and therapeutic strategies
5. Understand the critical features of an antibody-based array and how this approach can be developed into point-of-care devices
6. Understand the ethical considerations that need to be applied in the work flow when developing and validating an immunoassay

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Online activity24Lectures will be delivered face to face and become available online via upload to Loop for students to view over the course of the module
Tutorial6Tutorials will be scheduled informally after the delivery of content to cover the syllabus examined in such, and also allow for students to ask questions on course content to date
Independent Study80Students will be required to study independently for CA essay and the final exam
Online activity15Students will complete CA essay on the content just learned
Total Workload: 125

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Course Description
This module will cover two key analytical streams utilised in modern day pharmacology. The first half of the module will focus on proteomic analysis. Students will learn of the applications and practical implementation of methodologies such as 2D PAGE, MALDI-TOF mass spectrometry, and CZE in the analyses of chemically- and biologically-derived protein drugs, with emphasis on differences between the nature of biopharma- and pharma-drugs The second half of the module will focus on a popular biological molecule used in both analytical and therapeutic contexts; antibodies. Students will learn about the isolation and characterisation of antibodies and their use in cell therapies and diagnostic platforms. Specific attention will be afforded to the technologies used in antibody discovery such as single-cell screening, the use of biosensors, and array-based approaches.

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment10% Examination Weight90%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
Completion of online activityThe two lecturers have consulted with the head of School, and each one will hold a LOOP quiz after their delivery to prompt students to engage with the content and engage with the module elements prior to the final assessment. For this component there will be a re-sit exam for students that fail and this will be organized by the lecturers via LOOP.10%n/a
Reassessment Requirement Type
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
This module is category 1
Indicative Reading List

  • Kenneth Murphy,Casey Weaver: 2016, Janeway's Immunobiology, Garland Science, 081534550X
  • Jennifer E. Van Eyk,Michael J. Dunn: 2008, Clinical Proteomics, Wiley-Blackwell, 9783527316373
Other Resources

Myself and my colleague who deliver this module decided to revert back to a pre-covid assessment. In consultation with the head of School of Biotechnology, we would like to have a 10% CA (we will do that ourselves via LOOP) and a 90% proctored by registry written exam. Till now and as per covid regulations, we had the module as 100% CA; again with a split of 10% and 90%. This year and from now on, we will have a 10% CA and 90% written exam as proctored by registry though. The reason we kept the 10% CA was a decision also influenced by our head of School because as a School we want to keep the 10% to enhance engagement of students with the content. For students that fail, a re-sit in both components should be held in August.
Programme or List of Programmes
AFUAge Friendly University Programme
ASBSc in Analytical Science
SHSAStudy Abroad (Science & Health)
SHSAOStudy Abroad (Science & Health)
Date of Last Revision26-MAY-08

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