Applied pharmacology to biotechnology

A.Y. 2017/2018
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The course intends to provide the students with basic information on drugs' action, focusing on the general principles of pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics.
Expected learning outcomes
To this aim, students will learn about the cellular and molecular targets of drug actions, with emphasis on how the pharmacological interference with these targets can produce a therapeutic outcome. Students will also learn on how a drug reaches its target in the body, crossing physiologic barriers, distributing into peripheral tissues, and eventually being metabolized and excreted.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First trimester
Course syllabus
1: Pharmacodynamics. Classification of drug targets
· Describe membrane receptors
2: Pharmacodynamics. Classification of drug targets
· Describe intracellular receptors
3: Pharmacodynamics. Classification of drug targets
· Describe voltage-gated ion channels, pumps and transporters
4: Pharmacodinamics. Quantitative drug-receptor interactions
· Describe binding curves
· Define the concept of affinity and Bmax.
5: Pharmacodinamics. Quantitative drug-receptor interactions
· Describe dose-response relationships.
· Define the concepts of potency and efficacy.
· Define the concepts of agonist, antagonist, inverse agonist, partial agonist

6: Pharmacodinamics- Clinical applications
· Define the concepts of therapeutic index and therapeutic window
· Describe receptor desensitization and down-regulation
· Describe mechanisms of drug toxicity

7: Pharmacokinetics-Absorption
· Describe Physiologic barriers
· Describe physicochemical properties of biological membranes
· Describe administration routes and rationale
8: Pharmacokinetics-Distribution
· Define the concept of Volume of distribution
· Describe plasma protein binding
· Describe the role of transporters in drug distribution
· Describe the blood-brain-barrier
9: Pharmacokinetics-Metabolism
· Describe Oxidation/Reduction Reactions
· Describe Conjugation/Hydrolysis Reactions
10: Pharmacokinetics-Excretion
· Describe renal excretion
· Describe biliary excretion
11: Pharmacokinetics-Clinical applications
· Define bioavailability
· Define Clearance
· Describe Metabolism and excretion Kinetics
· Define the concept of elimination half-life
12: Pharmacokinetics- Clinical applications
· Factors altering the half-life
· Describe therapeutic dosing and frequency
· Describe pharmacokinetic parameters in special populations (e.g. elderly, children, chronic kidney diseases, liver disaeses)
13: Pharmacogenetics
· Molecular pharmacogenetics
· Clinical Pharmacogenetics
14: Biotechnological products
· Recombinant protein
· mABs
Lecture 15: Pharmacoepigenomics
· How drugs modify the epigenome
BIO/14 - PHARMACOLOGY - University credits: 7
Practicals: 32 hours
Lessons: 35 hours
Please contact [email protected] to schedule a meeting
Via Vanvitelli, 32 - 20129 Milano Dept. Medical Biotechnology and Translational Medicine