Biochemical Pharmacology

Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology

School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences
102 Farber Hall
South Campus
Buffalo, NY 14214-3000

Phone: 716.829.2800
Fax: 716.829.2801
Web: www.smbs.buffalo.edu/pmy

James R. Olson, Ph.D.
Director of Undergraduate Studies
13 Cary Hall
716.829.2319
jolson@buffalo.edu

About the Program

Pharmacology, simply defined, is the study of the interaction of drugs with living systems. This subject has a fascinating history and continues to be relevant in modern times. Pharmacology deals with a number of questions, for example: What is the molecular site of action? What are the changes caused by a drug in the normal function of tissues and organs? What is the relationship between the dose of a drug and its effect? How do drugs produce their effects? What happens to drugs once they enter the body? Since a drug is traditionally defined as a chemical that interacts with living systems, this subject has a very broad relevance from its obvious importance in the diagnosis and treatment of disease to the impact of abuse substances or environmental chemicals on societies. One of the strengths of the department is its focus on the use of molecular biology and gene cloning methods to develop the pharmacological agents of the future. Students in the department are encouraged to do research projects with the faculty who have interdisciplinary research interests in molecular biology, protein biochemistry, electrophysiology, and protein biophysics.

The broad academic background provides students with a wide array of career opportunities. Many graduates enter medical or dental schools or pursue graduate studies in pharmacology or other biological and biochemical sciences. Pharmacology graduates find employment in technical, production/analytical, or sales positions as research scientists or drug information specialists in the pharmaceutical industry, government, university laboratories, and hospitals. Students have also pursued careers in law and management following completion of their BS degree in pharmacology.

Degree Options

In addition to the BS program, the department offers a combined BS/MS degree that provides the laboratory research training and advanced courses needed for entry-level professional positions in the pharmaceutical industry and in academia. In this combined degree program, students have the opportunity to earn the combined degree in five years versus the usual six years needed to obtain both a BS and an MS degree. The program is available only to registered biochemical pharmacology (BCP) majors during their junior year at the University at Buffalo.

Transfer Policy

Transfer students should obtain admission to the university through the Office of Admissions before applying to the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology. Students must complete their university application (which includes sending official transcripts of the fall semester work) prior to March 15th. The department will evaluate prerequisite courses previously taken as possible substitutes for required courses.

Biochemical Pharmacology - B.S.

Acceptance Criteria

Minimum GPA of 2.5 in prerequisite courses.
Minimum GPA of 2.0 in required courses.

Advising Notes

Approximately 35-40 students are selectively admitted to the program each fall after completion of the prerequisites. Students should apply for admission while completing the departmental prerequisites--preferably during the middle of the sophomore year, but no later than March 15th. Applicants should bring a copy of their current UB DARS report directly to the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology.

Prerequisite Courses

BIO 200 Evolutionary Biology
BIO 201 Cell Biology
CHE 101 General Chemistry or CHE 105 Chemistry: Principles and Applications
CHE 102 General Chemistry or CHE 106 Chemistry: Principles and Applications
CHE 201 Organic Chemistry
CHE 202 Organic Chemistry
MTH 121 Survey of Calculus and Its Applications I or MTH 141 College Calculus I
MTH 122 Survey of Calculus and Its Applications II or MTH 142 College Calculus II
PHY 101/PHY 151 College Physics I/Lab* or PHY 107 General Physics I
PHY 102/PHY 152 College Physics II/Lab* or PHY 108/PHY 158 General Physics II/Lab*

Required Courses

BCH 403 Principles of Biochemistry
BCP 405 Principles of Pharmacology
BCP 406 Principles of Pharmacology
BCP 409 Experimental Pharmacology
BIO 302 Introduction to Molecular Biology
MCH 311 The Chemistry of Drug Action
PGY 451 Human Physiology I
PGY 452 Human Physiology II
Science electives**

Summary
Total required credit hours for the major...88-99

See Baccalaureate Degree Requirements for general education and remaining university requirements.

Recommended Sequence of Program Requirements

FIRST YEAR
Fall BIO 200; CHE 101 or CHE 105; MTH 121 or MTH 141
Spring BIO 201; CHE 102 or CHE 106; MTH 122 or MTH 142

SECOND YEAR
Fall CHE 201; PHY 101/PHY 151* or PHY 107
Spring CHE 202; PHY 102/PHY 152* or PHY 108/PHY 158*

THIRD YEAR
Fall BCH 403, MCH 311, PGY 451
Spring PGY 452, science electives**

FOURTH YEAR
Fall BCP 405, BIO 302, science electives**
Spring BCP 406, BCP 409, science electives**

*Only one (1) physics lab is required.

**15-25 credit hours of science electives are required; CHE 349 Physical Chemistry for Life Sciences is strongly recommended.

Electives and Course Groupings

Students may choose from the following science electives:

ANA 113 Anatomy
APY 107 Introduction to Physical Anthropology
APY 275 Introduction to Medical Anthropology
APY 276 Introduction to Ethnomedicine
BIO 319 Genetics
BIO 328 General Physiology
BIO 401 Advanced Biological Chemistry
BIO 461 Basic Radiation Science
BIO 468 Molecular Immunology
BPH 303 Principles of Biophysics
CHE 214 Analytical Chemistry
CHE 312 Chemistry of Biological Systems
CHE 349 Physical Chemistry for Life Sciences
CSE 101 Computers A General Introduction
MIC 301 Fundamentals of Microbiology
MIC 401 General Microbiology
MIC 412 Fundementals of Immunology
MT 402 Fundamentals of Immunology
NTR 108 Human Nutrition
NTR 401 Nutrition and Health
PGY 405 Cell Physiology
PGY 412 Applied Physiology
PHI 337 Social and Ethical Values in Medicine
STA 119 Statistical Methods or
STA 427 Introduction to Medical Statistics

Biochemical Pharmacology - B.S./M.S.

Acceptance Criteria

Minimum GPA of 3.0 overall.
Three (3) supportive letters of recommendation from the faculty.
A personal statement from the student.

Advising Notes

Applications are accepted only from registered University at Buffalo BCP majors during their junior year. The Graduate Record Exam is not a requirement for admission. Forms and applications should be filed by June 1.

Applications must be approved by the both the undergraduate and graduate admission committees.

Prerequisite Courses

BCH 403 Principles of Pharmacology
BIO 200 Evolutionary Biology
BIO 201 Cell Biology
CHE 101 General Chemistry or CHE 105 Chemistry: Principles and Applications
CHE 102 General Chemistry or CHE 106 Chemistry: Principles and Applications
CHE 201 Organic Chemistry
CHE 202 Organic Chemistry
MCH 311 The Chemistry of Drug Action
MTH 121 Survey of Calculus and Its Applications I or MTH 141 College Calculus I
MTH 122 Survey of Calculus and Its Applications II or MTH 142 College Calculus II
PGY 451 Human Physiology I
PGY 452 Human Physiology II
PHY 101/PHY 151 College Physics I/Lab* or PHY 107 General Physics I
PHY 102/PHY 152 College Physics II/Lab* or PHY 108/PHY 158 General Physics II/Lab*

Required Courses


BCP 511 Principles of Pharmacology I
BCP 512 Principles of Pharmacology II
BIO 302 Introduction to Molecular Biology
BMS 501 Cell Biology I
BMS 505 Cell Biology IIA
BMS 506 Cell Biology IIB
GSC 640 Graduate Research Ethics
PMY 550 Pharmacology Seminar
Research credits**
Science electives***

Summary
Total required credit hours for the undergraduate portion...77-81

See Baccalaureate Degree Requirements for general education and remaining university requirements.

Recommended Sequence of Program Requirements

FIRST YEAR
Fall BIO 200; CHE 101 or CHE 105; MTH 121 or MTH 141
Spring BIO 201; CHE 102 or CHE 106; MTH 122 or MTH 142

SECOND YEAR
Fall CHE 201; PHY 101/PHY 151* or PHY 107
Spring CHE 202; PHY 102/PHY 152* or PHY 108/PHY 158*

THIRD YEAR
Fall BCH 403, MCH 311, PGY 451, science elective***
Spring PGY 452, science electives***

FOURTH YEAR
Fall BCP 511, BIO 302, thesis research**, graduate science elective***
Spring BCP 512, GSC 640, thesis research**

FIFTH YEAR
Fall BMS 501, PMY 550, thesis research**
Spring BMS 505, BMS 506, thesis research**
Accepted Thesis

*Only one(1) physics lab is required.

**12-22 credit hours of research are required.

***15-19 credit hours of science electives are required; some courses may include a laboratory (4 cr).

Biochemical Pharmacology - Minor

About the Minor

The minor is suited to a wide variety of science and nonscience majors interested in acquiring an introductory understanding of drug action.

Acceptance Criteria

Applications should be made when the student has completed the prerequisite courses or is in the process of completing them during the semester when the application is made.

Minimum GPA of 2.5 in prerequisite courses.
Minimum GPA of 2.0 overall in minor to graduate.

Prerequisite Courses

BIO 200 Evolutionary Biology and BIO 201 Cell Biology
CHE 101-CHE 102 General Chemistry
CHE 201-CHE 202 Organic Chemistry

Required Courses

BCH 403 Principles of Biochemistry
BCP 302 Introduction to Pharmacology
PGY 300 Human Physiology
One elective science course selected with approval of program director

Course Descriptions

BCP 302 Introduction to Pharmacology

Credits:  4
Semester: F Sp
Prerequisites:  PGY 300 or PGY 451
Corequisites:  None
Type:  LEC

View Schedule

Introductory survey of the major drug groups commonly used in therapeutics. Presents the scientific bases of drug action and the utilization of their properties in the diagnosis and treatment of disease. Content and instruction is largely directed toward students in biomedical and life sciences programs (e.g., nursing and exercise science). Prerequisites include a strong background in basic sciences (chemistry and biology) and physiology (PGY 300 or equivalent).

BCP 405 Principles of Pharmacology

Credits:  4
Semester: F
Prerequisites:  BCH 403, PGY 451, PGY 452
Corequisites:  None
Type:  LEC/REC

View Schedule

Explores principles of drug action on biological systems, action mechanism of each agent class on specific organ systems, a review and extension of pertinent physiologic concepts of that system, chemical structure�drug activity relationships, sites of action, metabolic patterns of principal drugs, and therapeutic and toxicologic aspects. Dual-listed with BCP 511.

BCP 406 Principles of Pharmacology

Credits:  4
Semester: Sp
Prerequisites:  BCP 405
Corequisites:  None
Type:  LEC/REC

View Schedule

Explores principles of drug action on biological systems, action mechanism of each agent class on specific organ systems, a review and extension of pertinent physiologic concepts of that system, chemical structure�drug activity relationships, sites of action, metabolic patterns of principal drugs, and therapeutic and toxicologic aspects. Dual-listed with BCP 512.

BCP 409 Experimental Pharmacology

Credits:  3
Semester: Sp
Prerequisites:  BCP 405
Corequisites:  BCP 406
Type:  LEC/LAB

View Schedule

Covers fundamental pharmacologic techniques; complements instruction in BCP 405. Priority goes to BCP majors.

BCP 498 Undergraduate Research Participation in Biochemical Pharmacology

Credits:  1 - 12
Semester: F Sp
Prerequisites:  None
Corequisites:  None
Type:  LAB/TUT

View Schedule

Direct involvement in original research involving a literature search and laboratory work

BCP 499 Independent Study

Credits:  1 - 8
Semester: F Sp
Prerequisites:  None
Corequisites:  None
Type:  TUT

View Schedule

Involves a literature search and library work on a current topic in pharmacology. Includes interdisciplinary projects, such as analyses of trends in drug use, toxicological projects, and applied clinical aspects.

Updated: Jun 20, 2006 10:07:21 AM