Full Title:Biomolecular Therapeutics and Bioinformatics
Module Code:PHAR S8013
Credits: 7.5
Valid From:Semester 1 - 2013/14 ( September 2013 )
Module Delivered in 1 programme(s)
Module Description:The aims of this module are: To provide students with a detailed understanding of current biopharmaceuticals (in development and in therapeutic use). To provide students with an in-depth understanding of genomics and genome sequencing projects, their significance and potential applications within the biopharmaceutical and related industries. To provide students with a comprehensive knowledge of the principles, background, benefits and applications of bioinformatics.
Learning Outcomes:
On successful completion of this module the learner should be able to
  1. Describe and assess modern biotechnology and recombinant DNA/RNA technologies and their applications (theoretical and practical) in the production and development of a wide range of modern biopharmaceuticals
  2. Appraise the science and technology of therapeutic agents and gene therapy protocols and their application in the treatment of both inherited and acquired disorders.
  3. Critically analyse a relevant scientific article and present findings to peers.
  4. Evaluate and describe the applications, relevance, benefits and increasing importance of bioinformatics.
  5. Access relevant bioinformatics databases and search, analyse and evaluate the available information.

Module Content & Assessment

Indicative Content
Theory of modern (therapeutic) biopharmaceuticals:
Incl. Cytokines, growth factors, antibodies etc. as biotherapeutics
Blood clotting:
Blood clotting agents and clot lysis. Blood factor manufacture / purification and therapeutic use.
Therapeutic applications of molecular biology:
Incl. siRNA / miRNA / RNAi, oligonucleotide therapy etc.
Delivery of biopharmaceuticals:
Delivery methods for protein and nucleotide based therapeutics (incl. vectors).
Scientific data storage, analysis, integrity and dissemination:
Genomics, gene targeting and genome sequencing projects. Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS): Importance of data storage and data integrity (in accordance with regulatory requirements for electronic records and signatures). Overview of scientific databases.
Sequence analysis methods:
DNA & protein sequence analysis, incl. clustering techniques, pattern recognition protocols, similarity measures and their expression using software, predicting structures and functions of proteins.
Laboratory practicals:
Many of the techniques are applicable to a range of biopharmaceutical products and so have a broad spectrum of merit. The following list is designed to serve as a resource of ideas for suitable practicals to illustrate key concepts and techniques. • Laboratory scale fermentation of recombinant E. coli producing a selected biopharmaceutical product. • Isolation and analysis of DNA (genomic/plasmid) from E. coli. • Cloning (and expression) of a gene. • Immunoaffinity purification of a blood product from plasma using immobilised anti-factor monoclonal antibody preparations. • Characterisation of a protein based biopharmaceutical by SDS-PAGE. • Biomolecular detection methods (e.g. ELISA).
Computer based practical work:
Weekly practical sessions (computer based) will be used to deliver the practical aspect of the bioinformatics section, using appropriate DNA and protein analysis software and key databases.
Assessment Breakdown%
Course Work50.00%
End of Module Formal Examination50.00%

Full Time

Course Work
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Marks Out Of Pass Marks Assessment Date Duration
Practical/Skills Evaluation The requirement to submit regular laboratory reports is intended to act as encouragement for students to focus on the laboratory work. Marks for these reports will be based on report writing skills as well as practical ability. 1,2 25.00 0 0 Every Week 0
Practical/Skills Evaluation Computer-based practical sessions will be used for bioinformatics (incl. clustering, similarity and alignment algorithms, predicting protein structure from sequence information). A computer-based 'bioinformatics project' type assessment will be used at the end of the semester. 5 15.00 0 0 Sem 1 End 0
Presentation Each student will be responsible for selecting a recent peer-reviewed article, from an internationally recognised journal, pertaining to their lecture course. This assignment will involve the critical analysis and presentation of the tutor-approved (relevant) scientific article (2-3 students each week). Each student will prepare a 10-minute presentation for the class. The chosen article will be reviewed, followed by a 5-10 minute group discussion about the article, led by the student. 3 10.00 0 0 Every Week 0
No Project
No Practical
End of Module Formal Examination
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Marks Out Of Pass Marks Assessment Date Duration
Formal Exam End-of-Semester Final Examination 1,2,4 50.00 0 0 End-of-Semester 0
Reassessment Requirement
A repeat examination
Reassessment of this module will consist of a repeat examination. It is possible that there will also be a requirement to be reassessed in a coursework element.

DKIT reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Module Workload & Resources

Workload: Full Time
Workload Type Workload Description Hours Frequency Average Weekly Learner Workload
Lecture No Description 3.00 Every Week 3.00
Practical Laboratory-based (experiments) 3.00 Every Week 3.00
Tutorial No Description 1.00 Every Week 1.00
Practical Computer-based (bioinformatics) 1.00 Every Week 1.00
Directed Reading No Description 1.00 Every Week 1.00
Independent Study No Description 3.00 Every Week 3.00
Total Weekly Learner Workload 12.00
Total Weekly Contact Hours 8.00
This course has no Part Time workload.
Recommended Book Resources
  • Rho, J.P. and Louie, S.G. 2007, Handbook of pharmaceutical biotechnology, Wiley-Interscience
  • Hartwell, L.H., Hood, L., Goldberg, M., Reynolds, A., Silver, L. and Veres, R. 2006, Genetics: From genes to genomes, 3rd Ed., McGraw-Hill
  • Walsh, G. 2003, Biopharmaceuticals: Biochemistry and biotechnology, 2nd Ed., Wiley
  • Walsh, G. 2007, Pharmaceutical biotechnology: Concepts and applications, Wiley
  • Zvelebil, M.J. and Baum, J.O. 2008, Understanding Bioinformatics, Garland Science
  • Baxevanis, A.D. and Ouellette, B.F.F. 2005, Bioinformatics: a practical guide to the analysis of genes and proteins, Wiley
  • Rathore, A.S. and Sofer, G.K. 2012, Process validation in manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals, 3rd ed. Ed., CRC Press
This module does not have any article/paper resources
Other Resources

Module Delivered in

Programme Code Programme Semester Delivery
DK_SBIOP_8 Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Biopharmaceutical Science 1 Mandatory