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Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology, Unit Catalogue 2008/09

PA10239 Biopharmaceutics & general pharmacology

Credits: 12
Level: Certificate
Academic Year
Assessment: EX 100%
Aims: To introduce students to the physico-chemical characteristics of drugs and allied entities. To explain how these are relevant to their in vivo actions, their analytical quantification in medicines and biological fluids and in the design of medicinal products. To provide a practical training in measurement of physico-chemical characteristics. To introduce the student to general aspects of pharmacology and receptor theory.
Learning Outcomes:
At the end of the unit the student should be able to: correctly derive formulation masses and concentrations; demonstrate an understanding of the differences and similarities in real and ideal behaviour of drugs and when the two can be approximated; demonstrate a sound appreciation of the solution properties of drugs and the impact of pH and other vehicle variants on their values; demonstrate an understanding of the processes of passive drug transport and the role of solution thermodynamics in pharmaceutical science; demonstrate an understanding of the principles underlying the fate of a drug molecule following administration, and the concept of a receptor as defined by classical pharmacological means.

* Study skills, problem solving (T/F)
* Planning and organisation, handling information (T/F)
* Scientific and practical skills (T/F)
* Information and communication technology (T/F)
Ideal and real behaviour of drugs in the gaseous, liquid and solid state. Gas-liquid equilibria. Drug polarity and functional group effects. Crystal structure and polymorphism. Solvents and solute-solvent interactions. Concepts of activity, pH and its determination, pKw. Acid-base equilibria, pH/drug dissociation profiles, buffers. Routes of drug administration, drug absorption and distribution, an introduction to drug metabolism and excretion, pharmacokinetics and drug interactions. Buffer calculations. Drug solubility in aqueous solution, influence of pH, ionic strength and ion pairing. Partitioning, effects of molecular structure and pH. Diffusion and permeation. Introduction to solution thermodynamics. Receptor theory, agonists, antagonists, measurements of potency, pA2; Examples of the above taken from blood and respiratory pharmacology.