Immunity and the immune system
To define the basic mechanisms and concepts underpinning the science of Immunology and Allergy.
This module enables you to define the basic mechanisms and concepts underpinning the science of Immunology. The module is taught at Level 3 to give you a sound background in all aspects of Immunology.
Core research methods: transferable skills
Developing your understanding of how to plan, prepare and execute research in the field of molecular biology, microbiology immunology and genetics. As well as learning how to manage the various stages of research projects, you will gain experience presenting research data and preparing publications. This module will also enhance your ability to critically assess published literature and analyse data.
Common research methods: molecular techniques
During the molecular biology practical laboratory sessions, you will gain experience of standard techniques related to laboratory research in the fields of immunology, microbiology, and genetics. From this you will appreciate the workflow of gene cloning, followed by sequence analysis of genes and their variability, as well as cloning and expression of recombinant proteins. This will be supported by online provision of podcasts describing the theory and practice of each laboratory component, as well as videos and animations describing the details of laboratory practice.
Molecular aspects of allergy
The aim of this module is to enable you to describe the human immunoglobulin E (IgE) network and the mechanisms of tissue damage in allergic inflammation. It also explores the use of modern molecular biology techniques in the development of strategies for immunological intervention.
Mechanisms of autoimmunity
You will gain an understanding of recent developments in the molecular basis in the autoimmune process, including mechanisms of tolerance and the generation of autoimmunity. Additional information is also provided on generic and environmental risk factors and Immunotherapy of disease.
Innate immune recognition
Focusing on the basic mechanisms and concepts underpinning: immune activation within the context of infection with extracellular and intracellular pathogens; tumour recognition; immunoevasion and immunopathology. You will also gain insight in to how this understanding could be used for developing new vaccination or therapeutic strategies.
You will explore the role of innate immunity in the elicitation of an inflammatory response in response to cellular damage and infection and in the induction of acquired immunity. There will be a particular focus on pattern recognition receptors and cell damage and microbe-associated molecular patterns and their contribution to immune activation in the context of infection with extracellular and intracellular pathogens, tumour recognition, immunoevasion, immunopathology and vaccine development.
Introducing bioinformatic techniques and commonly used in medically related research including database interrogation, homologue identification, multiple sequence alignment, genomic data, and protein structure analysis. This topic will enable you 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.
You will design and execute a research programme performing experiments, surveys, analysing data and undertaking other research activities aimed at solving a specific biomedical problem in immunology or immunotherapeutics.
The form of project may vary from laboratory-based work, bioinformatics, or extended literature reviews, depending on the expertise of your project supervisor. As well as gaining the technical and project management skills required for contemporary research, you will develop the ability to write scientific texts through producing a dissertation based on your research findings.
This report is discussed with academic staff during an oral examination.