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Further Information

UCL School of Pharmacy
29/39 Brunswick Square
London WC1N 1AX
United Kingdom

+44 (0) 20 7753 5831
Email

Programme structure

The MSc programme is designed to allow participants to gain a broad overview of the pipeline of drug discovery and development with a deeper insight into pharma management. This will bear particular reference to regulatory and commercial affairs in the pharmaceutical industry and the opportunities for business development .

The degree programme outlines the molecular basis of disease and the identification and validation of drug targets. It investigates the various approaches to the identification of lead compounds and their development into active drug candidates. The degree exposes students to modern platforms for drug discovery and methods of drug synthesis and includes lectures from industry-based scientists and visits to industrial and biotechnological research laboratories.  Students gain hands-on experience of molecular modeling and computer-based drug design, and analytical and synthetic techniques. The approach of the pharmaceutical industry to pre-clinical development, clinical pharmacology, clinical trials, marketing, licensing and regulatory affairs form an integral part of the drug development process that is studied.

In the second term students study two specialist modules in Pharma Management covering topics such as Research and Clinical Development, Intellectual property, Commercial Teams, Global Regulatory Affairs, Agencies, Hearings and Approvals, Risk Management, Post Approval Obligations, Commercialisation, Product Design and Launch for Market, Pharma Company Structure, Industrial Relations, Investor Relations, Strategic Partnering and Business Development, Due Diligence, Financial Analysis, Business Case, Communication Skills.

The programme culminates in a business development project based on an aspect of science from drug discovery that will be supervised by academic scientists and business managers and can be carried out in the School of Pharmacy or as an extramural placement in industry.

Practical Classes

Practical classes are a key componenet of the degree programme  and includes hands-on experience of computer-based drug design, chemical synthesis, extraction of natural products, HPLC, protein purification and gel electrophoresis, enzyme-based bioassay, clinical biochemistry.

Core Modules

PHAYG029 The Process of Drug Discovery and Clinical Development 1 (30 credits)

PHAYG030 The Process of Drug Discovery and Clinical Development 2 (30 credits)

These two core modules span the first and second terms. They follow the process of drug discovery and development and introduce the basis of the pharmaceutical industry through examining previous successes and current methods of drug discovery. The modules include:

  • Introduction to the molecular basis of disease, identification and validation of drug targets
  • History of Drug Discovery and Identification of Lead Compounds
  • Advances in Synthetic Chemistry and Combinatorial Chemistry
  • Bioassays and High Throughput Screening of Compound Libraries
  • Molecular Modeling and Structure-Based Drug Design
  • Physiochemical Properties of Drugs (Absorption, Distribution, Metabolism)
  • Preclinical Drug Development
  • Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology
  • Clinical Trials
  • Regulatory Affairs, Commercial Affairs and Intellectual Property

PHAYG057 Medicinal Chemistry (30 credits)

This module comprises two key elements:
  • Modern Aspects of Drug Discovery: Includes  examples of drug discovery such as: beta blockers, antibiotics, biopharmaceuticals, PDE inhibitors, inhibitors of protein-protein interactions in cancer therapy, enzymes as drug targets, biopharmaceuticals, membrane proteins as drug targets.
  • Pharmaceutical Analysis: Analytical techniques used in drug discovery include: HPLC, uv-vis spectroscopy, infra-red spectroscopy, NMR, mass spectrometry, electrophoresis, immunochemistry, statistical analysis.

PHAYG033 Pharma Management 1 (15 credits)

PHAYG034 Pharma Management 2 (15 credits)

  • These modules cover such topics such as Research and Clinical Development, Intellectual property, Commercial Teams, Global Regulatory Affairs, Agencies, Hearings and Approvals, Risk Management, Post Approval Obligations, Commercialisation, Product Design and Launch for Market, Pharma Company Structure, Industrial Relations, Investor Relations, Strategic Partnering and Business Development, Due Diligence, Financial Analysis, Business Case, Communication Skills.

Visit to a Leading Pharmaceutical Company

Students visit a leading research laboratory. This is usually an all-day visit to a company such as GlaxoSmithKline, where students look at computer-based molecular modeling, how physico-chemical properties are determined, the robotic compound library, high through put screening, and the chemistry and biology labs. The visit is supplemented by the provision of material and instruction, as well as lectures, to assist understanding of drug discovery and development. The discovery process of a drug will be worked through in detail.

One-day Research Conference

Students attend a one-day research conference in an aspect of drug discovery and development organised by the Society for Medicines Research. Here they will have a chance to interact with leading industrialists and researchers in the field.

Page last modified on 07 nov 13 08:47