NS5210: Cellular Pathology

Please note this module descriptor is indicative of the structure of this course and may be subject to change.

NS5210: Cellular Pathology

Module Title Cellular Pathology
Module Code NS5210
Module Tutor Daniel Stones
School School of Natural and Social Sciences
CAT Points 15
Level of Study 5
Brief Description

Cellular pathology is the study of structural and functional changes in cells, tissues and organs that underlie disease. It is a dynamic, fast-evolving specialism which saves many lives by providing rational clinical care and therapy in the fight against many serious diseases, particularly cancer. In this module you will gain an in-depth understanding of the cellular processes that contribute to the pathogenesis of disease, together with a knowledge of relevant diagnostic and research techniques. This module will build on knowledge and skills gained in NS4207 Biochemistry and will support study on NS6209 Parasitology and NS6211 Biotechnology.

Indicative Syllabus

Through lectures, laboratory practical sessions and workshops students will explore the cellular basis of pathology. The module starts with a comprehensive introduction to immunology, covering both innate and adaptive immunity. We will start by looking at the various cells and molecules that are involved, and explore their functional organisation. We will ask some basic questions such as how does the immune system know what to respond to?, and how does it eliminate infection?. We will go on to discuss the concept of immunological memory and how vaccination works. The module also covers disease situations associated with imbalanced immunity, including immunodeficiencies, allergy and autoimmunity. We will also look at the medically very important field of transplantation, and investigate the potential for the immune system to fight different types of cancer. Students will gain a knowledge and understanding of the principles of carcinogenesis, malignancy and metastasis. They will understand how to apply cellular pathology to the diagnosis and management of a range of common cancers. This module also covers the cellular structure and function of the major organs and the cellular pathological findings in a range of clinical disorders other than cancer. The module ends with an exploration of medical genetics, in which students will learn about the role of genetics in human health and disease.


Note: By its very nature this module focuses on human diseases, some of which may have personal relevance to individual students. If you have any concerns about the content of this course or how it will be taught, please contact the module tutor to discuss.

Learning Outcomes

A student passing this module should be able to:

  1. Research and communicate complex scientific principles and ideas effectively
  2. Describe the structure and function of the immune system
  3. Discuss the molecular and cellular basis of common cancers, including their diagnosis and treatment.
  4. Understand the complex nature of genetic disorders, using specific examples and case studies.
  5. Comprehend and evaluate up to date, relevant research articles.
  6. To describe some practical research and diagnostic techniques.
Learning and Teaching Activities Scheduled Contact Hours: 24
Independent Learning Hours: 126
Assessment (For further details see the Module Guide) 001: 75% Coursework: Individual, standard written: 2500 words or equivalent
002: 25% Written Exam: End of module, unseen, closed book: 1.00 hours
Special Assessment Requirements None
Indicative Resources The current reading list can be found in the Module Guide, which your lecturer should make available via Moodle.

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