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PA20318: Specialised integrated unit 1: management of gastrointestinal & liver disease

[Page last updated: 15 October 2020]

Follow this link for further information on academic years Academic Year: 2020/1
Further information on owning departmentsOwning Department/School: Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology
Further information on credits Credits: 12      [equivalent to 24 CATS credits]
Further information on notional study hours Notional Study Hours: 240
Further information on unit levels Level: Intermediate (FHEQ level 5)
Further information on teaching periods Period:
Semester 1
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Summary: CW 30%, EX 70%
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Detail:
  • CPD coursework (CW 10% - Qualifying Mark: 40)
  • Problem Based Learning coursework (CW 10% - Qualifying Mark: 40)
  • Phamacokinetic coursework (CW 10% - Qualifying Mark: 40)
  • PA203018A Exam (EX 70% - Qualifying Mark: 40)
Further information on supplementary assessment Supplementary Assessment:
Like-for-like reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Further information on requisites Requisites: While taking this module you must take PA20319 AND take PA20320 AND take PA20321 AND take PA20322
Description: Aims:
To introduce the student to the next stage of the spiral curriculum where the management of diseased physiological systems is considered in an integrated way.
To provide a comprehensive, integrated understanding of the design and development of medicines, their pharmacological actions in the body and the evidence-based approach to treatment of patients with the aim of promoting safe and effective outcomes in gastrointestinal and liver diseases,

Learning Outcomes:
After successfully completing this unit, the student pharmacist will be able to:
1. Describe the aetiology, epidemiology, pathophysiology and clinical symptoms of GI and Liver disease and how they are diagnosed and treated.
2. Describe the formulation and requirements of solid and liquid dosage forms and their application in treating GI and liver disease
3. Explain the processes of GI absorption, metabolism and transport mediated ADME of drugs and their relevance in therapy outcomes
4. Describe the fundamentals of medicines design for use in gastrointestinal diseases
5. Discriminate between the pharmacological actions of drugs acting at sites in the GI tract
6. Explain how GI and liver physiology and disease affect drug therapy, formulation performance and drug efficacy and safety.
7. Identify and utilise evidence-based approaches for the management of gastro-intestinal disease and liver disease.
8. Describe the role of the pharmacist in prescribing, administering and monitoring medication for patients with gastro-intestinal and liver diseases
9. Make appropriate clinical decisions in support of patients with gastrointestinal and liver diseases.
10. Apply structured consultation skills to the conditions studied in this unit.

Scientific and practical skills (T/F/A)
Study skills, handling information, working with others (T/F)
Problem solving (T/F/A)
Study skills (Taught/Facilitated)
Handling information (T/F/A)
Written communication (T/F/A)
Scientific & practical skills (T/F/A)
Information & communication technology (ICT) (T/F)

Content to include: Clinical introduction and overview of therapeutic area - Problem-based learning case
* Pharmaceutics theme
- Pre-formulation - Solid form selection, crystallisation and particle engineering, salts and salt selection, polymorphic forms
- Drug solubility and dissolution rate. Methods for solubility enhancement
- Drug delivery to the GI tract. Formulation and physiological requirements.
- Drug absorption through different GI routes, physiological effects on oral absorption
- Dosage forms: Liquid dosage forms, solutions and suspensions. Solid dosage forms, enteric-formulations and suppositories.
- Drug transporters in ADME. Therapy implications.
- Fundamentals of hepatic dysfunction & liver disease
* Manufacturing environment and contamination
* Pharmacology theme
- The pharmacology of muscarinic and histamine receptors
- Gastric secretion - proton pump inhibitors, H2 antagonists and antacids
- Nausea and vomiting, anti-emetic drugs
* Medicinal Chemistry and drug design theme
- Drug metabolism: introduction, Cytochromes P450, families of enzymes, m - SAR in glucuronidation, tracking metabolism.
- Drug metabolism: Role of liver disease, drug interactions and non-linear kinetics in therapy.
- Drug Design - Classical SAR and QSAR
- Introduction to natural products as medicines
* Clinical therapeutics theme
- Dyspepsia, Helicobacter pylori, peptic ulcer disease
- Gastrointestinal motility, constipation and diarrhoea, laxatives, anti-motility agents
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Clinical decision-making in gastroenterology and liver disease
* Simulation and practice-based learning in gastrointestinal and liver disease.
Further information on programme availabilityProgramme availability:

PA20318 is a Designated Essential Unit on the following programmes:

Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology
  • USPA-AFM03 : MPharm(Hons) Pharmacy (Year 2)
  • USPA-AKM03 : MPharm(Hons) Pharmacy with integrated pre-registration year (Year 2)


  • This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2020/21 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2021/22 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2020/21.
  • Programmes and units are subject to change in accordance with normal University procedures.
  • Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.
  • Find out more about these and other important University terms and conditions here.