PHAR30060 Central Nervous Systems Diseases

Academic Year 2023/2024

This module forms part of the core curriculum for the MB. BCh. BAO degrees in the School of Medicine and Medical Science. It introduces students to common central nervous system diseases, their causes, clinical features and treatments. Areas covered include: viral and bacterial infections of the central nervous system, head injuries, stroke, neurodegenerative conditions, brain and spinal cord tumours, psychotic, neurotic and mood disorders, epilepsy, anaesthetic agents and drugs of abuse.We would like to remind all students taking this module that there is an expectancy of 80% attendance for the scheduled tutorials

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this module students should have:(A) Improved biomedical knowledge: (Ai) Describe the neurochemical, pathological and microbiological processes that underly the common diseases of the central nervous system (Aii) Review the pharmacology of drugs that have their primary site of action in the central nervous system. (B) Increased clinical skills: (Bi) Identify the clinical presentations of the common diseases of the central nervous system. (Bii) Describe the laboratory investigations required to make the diagnosis of these diseases and interpret results of these investigations. (Biii) Formulate appropriate treatment and preventative interventions to manage these diseases. (c) Improved professional and personal development (Ci) Self directed and enquiry-based learning in order to comprehend and evaluate a clinical case. (Cii) Active participation in interactive small group tutorials

Indicative Module Content:

Disorders of the Central Nervous System are covered from microbiological, pathological and pharmacological perspectives. Key topics include Alzheimer's disease, Parkinsons's Disease, stroke, anxiety, depression, epilepsy, pain, schizophrenia, drugs of abuse and infections of the brain such as meningitis and herpes.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours
Specified Learning Activities


Autonomous Student Learning








Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
The content of the module is delivered through lectures and tutorials. The approach is to provide a basis for understanding brain diseases from a microbiological and pathological perspective. This is then built on by considering how drugs can be used to treat CNS disorders. 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations
Learning Requirements:

Students are required to have a background in human physiology and
biochemistry and to have studied the Disease Mechanisms and Pharmacology module (PATH30080), or a module with equivalent learning outcomes.
They are also required to have studied the Neurophysiology mpodule (PHYS20020) or a module with equivalent learning outcomes.

Learning Exclusions:

Students wishing to take this module as an elective should contact the module co-ordinator directly.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
PHAR30080 - Drugs used in CNS diseases

Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade In Module Component Repeat Offered
Examination: Section 2 - Short note questions covering Pathology, Medical Microbiology and Pharmacology 2 hour End of Trimester Exam No Graded No


Examination: Section 1 of final exam MCQ 2 hour End of Trimester Exam No Graded No



Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Spring Yes - 2 Hour
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Distribution of class grades will be posted in BrightSpace after the end of trimester examination.

Name Role
Dr Olga Baron Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Dr Koon-Meng Chan Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Dr Peter Holloway Lecturer / Co-Lecturer
Professor Keith Murphy Lecturer / Co-Lecturer