Pharma I - Drug Discovery and Preclinical Development

Course content

The topics taught are:

  • Genome and target evaluation
  • Identification of lead structures
  • Medicinal chemistry: Lead optimization and synthesis
  • Non-clinical safety
  • Animal biology and pharmacology
  • Pre-formulation
  • Pharmaceutical formulation

BRIDGE - Translational Excellence Program


Learning outcome

On completion of the course, the participants should be able to:


  • Give a comprehensive overview of the pre-clinical phase of discovery and development of medicines
  • Identify correct professional terms in drug discovery and pre-clinical development of medicines
  • List major steps and elements of the pre-clinical drug development process
  • Outline definitions of key concepts and the fundamentals of the major disciplines in drug discovery and pre-clinical development



  • Appraise the integration of the various basic disciplines into the process of discovery and pre-clinical development of medicines
  • Analyse the sequence and flow of the various steps in the process of drug discovery and pre-clinical development



  • Liaise with all steps of drug discovery and pre-clinical development
  • Identify critical factors and bottlenecks that influence the pre-clinical drug development process
  • Promote and state milestones for the progress of the pre-clinical development of a medical product
  • Communicate professionally with the various specialist groups within the area of development of medicines

The course is organized as an intensive 5-day course and comprises lectures, group discussions, case studies, presentations and discussions.

The syllabus comprises collections of review papers, textbook chapters and case stories and updated lecture slides. 

Participants are expected to purchase: Drug Discovery and Development. Technology in Transition, 2nd edition Humphrey P. Rang, Churchill Livingstone, 978-0443064203. Available also as E-Book.

The Textbook of Pharmaceutical Medicine, 7th edition, 2013. John P. Griffin (Editor), John Posner (Editor), Geoffrey R. Barker (Editor) Blackwell BMJ Books serves as “nice to know”.

Participants must meet the admission criteria in BRIDGE - Translational Excellence Programme

Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Type of assessment
Continuous assessment
Course participation
Attendance and active participation
All aids allowed
Marking scale
passed/not passed
Censorship form
No external censorship
Criteria for exam assessment

Active participation

Part time Master and Diploma courses

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 20
  • Theory exercises
  • 15
  • English
  • 35