Through this course and the following modules, you will acquire the skills and advanced knowledge in immunology and allergy necessary to prepare you for future research tasks. As part of this you will learn to appreciate the contribution of immunological mechanisms to a wide range of disease processes as a basis for developing new diagnostic and therapeutic strategies.
The MSc Immunology and Allergy is taught on a full-time basis over one year (September to late August) offering 120 credits of taught modules and a 60 research project.
Immunity and the Immune System:
The aim of this introductory 10 credit module is to define the basic mechanisms and concepts underpinning the science of immunology and allergy.
This is a 20 credit module which demonstrates how various research strategies are used to study immunology. Students will learn how to employ the skills of criticising and reporting scientific work. You will also be trained to carry out critical evaluation of published scientific papers and report and interpret the results.
Molecular Aspects of Allergy:
This is a 20 credit module taught in semester one. The aim is for students to be able to describe the human IgE network, the mechanisms of allergic tissue damage, and to establish strategies for immunological intervention.
Mechanisms of Autoimmunity:
The aim of this 20 credit module is to demonstrate how the application of modern molecular techniques is leading to the understanding of autoimmunity and the development of intervention strategies.
Innate Immune Recognition:
This is a 20 credit module held in semester two. This module focuses on the basic mechanisms and concepts underpinning immune activation within the context of infection with extracellular and intracellular pathogens, tumour recognition, immunoevasion and immunopathology and how this understanding could be used for developing new vaccination/ therapeutic strategies
This module is worth 20 credits which describes how to analyse current and potential therapeutic strategies, and to assess the use of engineered antibodies and peptide vaccines for treating immunological diseases.
Taught together with students from the MSc in Molecular Diagnostics, this 10-credit module provides an introduction to bioinformatics. This module will enable students to obtain practical experience in using bioinformatics software available for the analysis of genomic, transcriptomic and proteomic data.
The module is taught using a combination of lectures and practical sessions. Students are required to produce a poster for assessment which includes information gathered from online databases about a particular gene or disease. Topics for poster presentations in previous years have included Complement C3, CD45, NOD2 and bare lymphocyte syndrome.
This module will enable you to experience contemporary research methods by designing a research programme and performing experiments, surveys, or other research activities aimed at solving a specific biomedical problem. The research project is worth a total of 60 credits. The project will allow the student to establish the technical skills required for immunology research and for designing experiments. They will also be able to demonstrate the ability to write scientific texts. The focus of research in Immunology is in the area of Immunnomodulation, for example, studies of a variety of means of therapeutic manipulation of the immune response. This is aimed particularly in the area of cancer, allergy, and infection and autoimmunity.
Please note that all module details are subject to change.
The modules studied during the autumn semester are assessed at the beginning of the spring semester and those studied in spring are assessed at the beginning of the summer semester.
Other features of the course
Each student is allocated a personal tutor at the beginning of the course, and regular meetings are scheduled throughout the year.
Course material is delivered in a variety of ways, including lectures, practical sessions, tutorials and problem-based learning sessions.
The online MSc database provides a central point for you to access your timetable, assessment results and easy access to additional module resources provided by staff. You will be expected to work independently, and as part of a group.
The course is assessed by a variety of methods, including examinations delivered electronically (multiple choice, multiple response and extended matching questions), oral presentations, essays, poster preparation and dissertation.