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Course Description

This is the second quarter of a four-quarter required core course sequence that covers organic medical agents. Topics covered include a general introduction to the physicochemical properties of organic medicinal agents and their interactions with receptors, and to the metabolism of drugs. Specific classes of agents that are covered include anti-cancer drugs, vitamins, and minerals. Prerequisite: MEDCH 400; CHEM 239; CONJ 403. Offered: Autumn quarter. Credits: 3.

Course Information

Learning Objectives and Competencies

  1. To understand the physicochemical properties of medicinal agents, such as chemical bonding, ionization, lipophilicity and stereochemistry, and be able to relate this information to absorption, distribution, receptor interactions and excretion.
  2. To know the most important pathways of drug metabolism and the enzymes involved, and be able to relate this information to drug action, drug-drug interactions, and to some drug toxicities.
  3. To know the major kinds of cancers and some predisposing factors, and to know the phases of carcinogenesis, and logically analyze information about cancer found in the public domain; to communicate with others about the basis for various kinds of cancers and their treatments.
  4. To recognize the structural features of the most widely used anti-cancer agents, their major therapeutic uses and dose-limiting toxicities, and their mechanisms of action, and be able to relate this information to the development and use of combination chemotherapy regimens in the treatment of cancers.
  5. To know the difference between the Daily Value (DV) and Recommended Daily Allowance/Adequate Intake (RDA/AI) values for vitamins and minerals thought to be required for optimum human health; to be able to identify consequences of suboptimal and supraoptimal vitamin and mineral intake; and to know the mechanisms of metabolic reactions in which vitamins and minerals participate. With this knowledge base, students should be able to discuss with patients rational therapeutic uses of vitamins and minerals, their dietary sources, and when and which supplements might be needed.

Grading Policy

Grades are based on your performance in two 100-point, one-hour exams and one 100-point final exam. An overall 75% achievement will translate to a 2.6 GPA, and 90% or above to a 4.0. Anything below 55% equals a 0.0.

Recommended Course Text (not required):

T.L. Lemke, et al., Foye's Principles of Medicinal Chemistry, 7th Edition, 2013 or 6th Edition, 2008.

Lecture Notes - available on the Resources page.

Previous year exams will be posted on the Resources page.

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