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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Biological Sciences : Postgraduate

Postgraduate Course: Quantitating drug binding (PGBI11038)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Biological Sciences CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryIn three practical sessions, students individually will determine the binding constant of an agonist to rat-brain muscarinic acetylcholine receptor using a filter assay to measure bound receptor. Further sessions will derive the binding constants and total number of receptors from the data, including use of non-linear least squares fit to the hyperbola describing binding. This analysis will be used to determine variances for the parameters fitted and will lead to a critical examination of the design of the experiment. Other techniques for determining binding constants will be considered, with an emphasis on the appropriate windows in which they can be applied and on potential artefacts and pitfalls.
Course description Week Title
1 Introduction
2 Setting the biological context
3 Practical - Day1
4 Practical - Day 2
5 Practical - Day 3
6 Isothermal Calorimetry and demonstration
7 Fitting binding isotherms - theory
8 Fitting binding isotherms - practice
9 Demonstrations - Surface Plasmon Resonance, fluorescence
10 Formative Peer Assessment on Posters
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2016/17, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  21
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Lecture Hours 6, Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 14, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 78 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Extended Practical report 50 %
Webfolio on a specific technique 30 %
Blog/e-Portfolio 20 %
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Understand how drug binding to their targets is measured and to assess critically pit-falls in methods, their interpretation, and the statistical basis of how relevant numerical values are derived;
  2. Perform in the laboratory, safely and competently, measurements of drug binding, and interpret results in the light of theoretical understanding;
  3. Develop self-organisation and autonomy through practical work and by reflecting on learning and its development throughout the course;
  4. Communicate in the form of a scientific paper, construct spreadsheets in a self-documenting manner ready for reuse, and develop skills to estimate numerical values from first principles;
  5. Manage practical work in a group, showing responsibility and leadership (when required); account for engagement on the course through a blog that reflects on personal development throughout the course.
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Course organiserDr Paul Mclaughlin
Tel: (0131 6)50 7060
Course secretaryMs Andrea Nichol
Tel: (0131 6)50 8643
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