Courses

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Undergraduate courses

PHCL 2001 - Basics of Pharmacology: A Drug's Fantastic Voyage

(2.0 cr; A-F only, prereq first-year chemistry or instr consent)

This new course introduces the basics of pharmacology by following the voyage of a drug from its site of administration through to its site of action and eventual elimination from the body. The focus will be on the core principles affecting a drug’s activity in the body. It is highly appropriate for those students interested in basic research, medicine, or the pharmaceutical industry and fulfills requirements for the Pharmacology minor. The class is well suited for those who have not already taken biochemistry and upper division biology courses; first-year chemistry is the only pre-requisite. The format will be highly interactive, with structured student learning developed primarily through classroom discussions, problem sets, and written exams. 

Course Director: Dr. Greg Connell (conne018@umn.edu)

PHCL 3100 - Pharmacology for Pre-Med and Life Science Students

(2.0 cr; Prereq-College-level biology; biochemistry or physiology recommended; A-F or Aud, spring, every year)

This introductory course in modern pharmacology is suitable for students interested in clinical medicine, biological science research, health care professions, or pharmaceutical -- or those just wanting a taste of how drugs work. The emphasis will be on the big picture of "therapeutic drugs" in general, and to prepare students for future success in modern medicine, research, industry, graduate schools, or matriculation to health science programs. This course covers different drug categories for major organ systems including the nervous system, the cardiovascular system, and the endocrine/reproductive systems, as well as drugs for diseased conditions like cancers and infectious and inflammatory diseases. The course will also introduce new concepts in modern drug design and application including gene and cell therapy and pharmacogenomics. This course is required for students declaring a Pharmacology Minor. 

Course Director: Dr. Li-Na Wei (weixx009@umn.edu
Associate Director: Dr. Hiroshi Hiasa (hiasa001@umn.edu)

PHCL 4001 - Mechanisms of Drug Action

(2.0 cr; A-F only, prereq Upper div or instr consent; [prev or concurrent] courses in [biology, biochemistry] recommended)

In our modern society, drug-based strategies are the predominant and often the most effective means to treat disease. This introductory course presents many of the fundamental concepts that define the discipline of pharmacology by focusing on the derivation of a drug-based strategy to treat cancer. Excessive nomenclature and memorization will be avoided. Since pharmacology is at the intersection of biochemistry, genomics, physiology, and medicine, the course will necessarily take into account these disciplines in devising drug-based strategies to treat a disease. The course is designed to be highly interactive, with both written and oral components. Structured student learning is developed primarily through classroom lectures, reading materials, and three midterm exams. The course is highly appropriate for those interested in medicine, biological research or the pharmaceutical industry. PHCL 4001 can fulfill requirements for the Pharmacology minor and is an approved CBS elective for Biology, GCD and Neuroscience majors. No previous background in pharmacology is required but a previous or concurrent course in biochemistry is highly recommended.

Course Co-Director: Dr. Greg Connell (conne018@umn.edu)
Course Co-Director: Dr. Daniel Romero (romero@umn.edu)

PHCL 4003 - Anti-infective drugs: Drugs that kill invaders

(2.0 cr; Prereq-College-level biology; A-F or Aud, Spring, every year)

Principles/mechanisms of anti-infective drugs, and treatments of infectious diseases.

Course Director: Dr. Hiroshi Hiasa (hiasa001@umn.edu)

PHCL 4010 - Current Research Topics in Pharmacology

(2.0 cr; prereq upper div or instr consent; A-F only; Fall only)

The goal of this course is to expose students to a variety of cutting-edge research projects in Pharmacology. The course consists of research seminars, discussion sessions, literature-based projects, and oral presentations. Students will learn how to study a research project/literature and give a scientific presentation.

Course Director: Hiroshi Hiasa, (hiasa001@umn.edu)

PHCL 4020 - Chemotherapy: from current anticancer drugs to future cancer therapeutics

(3.0 cr; Prereq-College-level biology; PHCL2001 and/or PHCL3100, GCD4151 recommended; A-F, Fall, every year)

This course will expose students to the studies of therapeutic agents used for the treatment of cancer. We will study the mechanisms of current anticancer drugs. We will also explore the recent development of novel anticancer agents, as well as the process of drug discovery and development.

Course Co-Director: Hiroshi Hiasa, (hiasa001@umn.edu)
Course Co-Director: Dr. Cheuk Leung (ctleung@umn.edu)

PHCL 4100: Laboratory in Molecular Pharmacology

(2.0 cr; Prereq -[2001 or 4001], 3100, [BioC 3021 or BioC 4331], [BioC 4025, BioC 4125 recommended]; A-F only)

The goal of this course is to expose students to a variety of cutting-edge research projects in Pharmacology. The course consists of research seminars, discussion sessions, literature-based projects, and oral presentations. Students will learn how to study a research project/literature and give a scientific presentation.  

Course Director: Dr. Daniel Romero (romero@umn.edu)

PHCL 4343: Pharmacology of the Synapse

(3.0 cr; Recommended -[2001, 3100] or instr conesnt; A-F only)

Examine how drugs impact the physiology of the synapse and how this relates to: (1) neuronal signaling and communication; (2) human conditions such as anxiety, depression, and pain; (3) drug design to address these conditions and societal challenges like addiction. 

Course Director: Dr. Hiroshi Hiasa (hiasa001@umn.edu)

PHCL 4993 - Directed Studies

(6.0 cr max; 2 completions allowed; S-N only; prereq instr consent , dept consent )

Individual study ('dry lab' experience) on selected topics in Pharmacology/Biomedical science with a faculty of the Pharmacology Department or other biomedicine disciplines. Emphasizes readings and use of scientific literature. 

Contract for student to complete

Course Director: Dr. Hiroshi Hiasa (hiasa001@umn.edu)

PHCL 4994 - Directed Research

(12.0 cr max; 4 completions allowed; S-N only; prereq instr consent , dept consent )

Laboratory research ('wet lab' experience') in the areas of Pharmacological/Biomedical science with a faculty of the Pharmacology Department or other biomedicine disciplines. 

Contract for student to complete

Course Director: Dr. Hiroshi Hiasa (hiasa001@umn.edu)

Graduate courses

PHCL 5109 - Problems in Pharmacology

(1.0 - 18.0 cr [max 18.0 cr]; Prereq-Upper div or grad student or #; fall, spring, summer, every year, requires approval from Director of Graduate Studies)

Research projects and special problems by arrangement.

PHCL 5110 - Introduction to Pharmacology

(3.0 cr; Prereq-Grad student or #; A-F or Aud, fall, every year) 

Basic principles of Pharmacology. Focuses on molecular mechanisms of drug action.

PHCL 5111 - Pharmacogenomics

(3.0 cr; Prereq-Grad student or #; A-F or Aud, spring, every year)

Human genetic variation, its implications. Functional genomics, pharmacogenomics, toxicogenomics, proteomics. Interactive, discussion-based course.

PHCL 5112 - A Graduate Toolkit I: An Introduction to the Scientific Research Lab

(1.0 cr; prereq instructor consent; A-F; fall, every year)

This survey course will introduce graduate students to the basic operating principles and techniques of a scientific research laboratory. Discussion topics regarding laboratory operations will include: laboratory personnel structure, professionalism in a research laboratory, and scientific authorship and publication. Basic discussion of scientific techniques will include: recombinant protein production and purification, DNA and RNA purification and methods, molecular biology methods, microscopy, and an introduction to basic model systems and bioinformatics.

PHCL 5113 - A Graduate Toolkit II: Scientific Speaking and Writing for Graduate Students

(2.0 cr; prereq instructor consent; A-F; fall, every year) 

Scientific Writing and Speaking. Students receive guidance on powerpoint design, public speaking and dealing with questions/answer sessions at scientific talks and poster sessions. Practice sessions in lecture theatres are videotaped and analyzed to highlight strategies for improvement. For non-native English speakers, further consultations and coaching with CTL faculty are available. In the second part of the class students will receive guidance in writing a scientific manuscript and a grant proposal on their thesis research topic. Both sections are co-taught by Pharmacology Faculty and Faculty from the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL).

PHCL 5462 - Neuroscience Principles of Drug Abuse

(2.0 cr; =[NSC 5462]; Prereq-#; spring)

Current research on drugs of abuse, their mechanisms of action, characteristics shared by various agents, and neural systems affected by them. Offered biennially, spring semester of even-numbered years.

PHCL 8100 - Laboratory Research in Pharmacology

(4.0 cr; [max 8 credits]; Prereq-Grad student or #, S/N, fall, spring, every year)

Supervised independent research experience in pharmacology. Focus on gaining expertise in modern biomedical/pharmacology research methodology, data generation and analysis, and formulation and testing of basic science hypotheses.

PHCL 8110 - Advanced Pharmacology

(4.0 cr; Prereq-5110 or #; A-F or Aud, spring, every year)

Contemporary research concepts, experimental approaches in investigative pharmacology. Mechanisms of action of drugs on systems (whole animal), organ, and cellular levels.

PHCL 8200 - Seminar: Selected Topics in Pharmacology

(1.0 cr [max 8.0 cr]; Prereq-5212 or #; A-F; fall, spring, every year)

Student-presented seminars.

PHCL 8207 - Seminar: Psychopharmacology

(1.0 cr; =[NSC 8207, PSY 8070]; Prereq-#; fall, spring, every year)

For graduate students and postdoctorals interested in studies and research associated with psychotropic drugs and chemicals. Neurochemistry, pharmacology, and behavior as antecedent or consequential variables. Some seminars devoted to biomedical ethics.

PHCL 8208 - Neuropsychopharmacology

(3.0 cr; Prereq-[5212, Psy 5021, Psy 5061] or #; A-F or Aud)

Methodologies to study relationships between drugs and biochemical, behavioral, and neurophysiological consequences. Functional biogenic amine, peptidergic, other pathways. How manipulations alter neuronal function or behavior. Feedback mechanisms, induction, inhibition. Reinforcement of, tolerance to, or dependence on drugs of abuse: stimulants, hallucinogens, depressants, opiates. Student presentations. Offered alternate years.

PHCL 8217 - Problems in Investigative Pharmacology

(1.0 cr; S-N or Aud, fall, every year)

Presentation and discussion of contemporary research problems, investigative approaches, and methodologies in experimental pharmacology. Related to cardiovascular, renal, endocrine, and autonomic pharmacology; neuropharmacology; psychopharmacology; chemotherapy; toxicology; and molecular pharmacology.

PHCL 8211 - Advanced Medical Pharmacology I

(5.0 cr; Prereq-5110, A-F, spring, every year)

This course is of hybrid design, with an online independent learning component coupled to an in-class interactive discussion/student participation component. The former segment will require students to view online archived lectures delivered by pharmacology faculty to UMN medical students. The focus of these lectures is on the pharmacology of currently utilized therapeutic agents. Student performance will be evaluated through secure multiple-choice question examinations. The latter section of the course is comprised of an interactive series of in class discussion periods focused around assigned readings from the current literature. Evaluation of student performance of this portion of the course will be based on multiple assessment tools including: class participation, written homework assignments, oral examinations, formal class presentations, and others.  Final course grade is based on combined performance on both objective and subjective assessments. Students must receive a passing grade in both components, irrespective of overall performance, in order to pass the course.

PHCL 8212 - Advanced Medical Pharmacology II

(3.0 cr; Prereq-8211, A-F, summer, every year)

This course is of hybrid design, with an online independent learning component coupled to an in-class interactive discussion/student participation component. The former segment will require students to view online archived lectures delivered by pharmacology faculty to UMN medical students. The focus of these lectures is on the pharmacology of currently utilized therapeutic agents. Student performance will be evaluated through secure multiple-choice question examinations. The latter section of the course is comprised of an interactive series of in class discussion periods focused around assigned readings from the current literature. Evaluation of student performance of this portion of the course will be based on multiple assessment tools including: class participation, written homework assignments, oral examinations, formal class presentations, and others.  Final course grade is based on combined performance on both objective and subjective assessments. Students must receive a passing grade in both components, irrespective of overall performance, in order to pass the course.

PHCL 8221 - Neurobiology of Pain and Analgesia

(3.0 cr; Prereq instructor consent; fall)

Course offered triennially.

PHCL 8222 - Transdisciplinary Tobacco Research

(1.0 cr [max 2.0 cr]; Prereq-#; S-N or Aud, fall, odd years)

Transdisciplinary science, its application to nicotine/tobacco research. Transdisciplinary theories/methods, examples of their application/integration. Draws on TTURC/local investigators, public health advocates. Offered every other year.

PHCL 8333 - FTE: Master's

(1.0 cr; Prereq-Master's student, adviser and DGS consent; No Grade, fall, spring, summer, every year)

PHCL 8444 - FTE: Doctoral

(1.0 cr; Prereq-Doctoral student, adviser and DGS consent; No Grade, fall, spring, summer, every year)

PHCL 8666 - Doctoral Pre-Thesis Credits

(1.0 - 18.0 cr [max 60.0 cr]; Prereq-Max 18 cr per semester or summer; doctoral student who has not passed prelim oral; No Grade, fall, spring, summer, every year)

PHCL 8777 - Thesis Credits: Master's

(1.0 - 18.0 cr [max 50.0 cr]; Prereq-Max 18 cr per semester or summer; 10 cr total required [Plan A only]; No Grade, fall, spring, summer, every year)

PHCL 8888 - Thesis Credits: Doctoral

1.0 - 24.0 cr [max 100.0 cr]; Prereq-Max 18 cr per semester or summer; 24 cr required; No Grade, fall, spring, summer, every year