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Antimicrobial theory (ICM7095)

Module convener:         

Michele Branscombe, m.branscombe@qmul.ac.uk 

This module is an introduction to the major groups of anti-microbials their use and how resistance can develop. From practical experience students will evaluate in vitro anti-microbial test results to inform the use of appropriate therapy in the clinical setting. Emphasis is also placed on the consideration of the appropriate use of anti-microbial guidelines and the use anti-microbials in clinical situations to prevent the development of antimicrobial resistance.

The module aims to provide:

  • An introduction to the structure, function and method of action and mode of resistance for the commonly prescribed antimicrobial agents including anti viral, anti parasitic and anti fungal agents.
  • Demonstrate the role of the laboratory in the optimisation of antibiotic therapy.
  • A clinical based approach to the use of antimicrobials in practice.
  • An understanding of the development and use of antimicrobial guidelines and how these can limit the development of resistance and to encourage cost benefit analysis of antimicrobial choice.
  • An introduction to the role of the pharmacist in antimicrobial therapy
  • An introduction to emerging antimicrobials.

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the structure, function and method of action and mode of resistance for the commonly prescribed antimicrobial agents including anti viral and anti fungal agents.
  • Perform laboratory based tests and interpret them to optimise antibiotic therapy.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the use of antimicrobials in clinical practice .
  • Develop and use antimicrobial guidelines to limit the development of resistance and to encourage cost benefit analysis of antimicrobial choice.
  • Become a professional member of a multidisciplinary team controlling the use of antimicrobials within a clinical setting. Be aware of the roles of others, e.g. pharmacists and specialists in haematology or surgery
  • Explain the development process for a new antimicrobial from discovery through development, clinical trials and into clinical use. Be aware of the most recently developed antimicrobials which have reached the formulary and those which are in final phase three clinical trials.

Students are expected to develop a strong basic background from text books but this must be supplemented by research in current scientific literature.

Suggested background texts include:

Finch et al: Antibiotic and Chemotherapy.
Walsh: Antibiotics: Actions, Origins and Resistance
British National Formulary

Suggested journals include:
International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents
Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy

Formative Assessment

To assist you with your learning and understanding a formative MCQ (Multiple Choice Questions) assessment is set.

End of module written assessment

This is an end of module exam paper. The paper will consist of 4 questions of equal value. The student will answer 2 questions. The questions will be in the style of short notes or essays.
Type of assessment: Coursework
Duration: 60 minutes
Percentage weighting in module: 100%

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