Module Overview

Pharmaceutical & Bioorganic Chemistry

This module is at an intermediate level.  It builds on the concept of stereochemistry introduced in the first year of the programme, and broadens it in order to further examine the importance of stereochemistry in pharmaceutical chemistry. A more thorough examination of the 1,2-addition to carbonyl compounds and carboxylic acid derivatives will be provided and contextualised by considering applications in bioorganic and combinatorial chemistry. The physicochemical properties of drugs and the effect on drug administration, action and duration will be described.  An overview of the structure and function of biomolecules will be given and related to drug action and duration.

Module Code

CHEM 2024

ECTS Credits


*Curricular information is subject to change

Stereochemistry: E/Z isomers, enantiomers (R/S), perspective formulae and Fischer projections, isomers with more than one chirality centre, resolution of enantiomers, biological activity of enantiomers.

Biomolecules:  Structure, classification, nomenclature and stereochemistry of organic building blocks that form carbohydrates, proteins, lipids and nucleic acids. Introduction to proteins and nucleic acids as drug targets.  An overview of role in / effect on drug administration and duration of action. Use of biomolecules and structurally related compounds as active pharmaceutical agents. 

Carbonyl chemistry: 1,2-Addition reactions of a range of nucleophiles to carbonyl compounds (aldehydes and ketones), The properties and synthesis of carboxylic acid derivatives, The applications of this chemistry to bioorganic chemistry and in combinatorial chemistry.

Introduction to physicochemical properties of drugs and effect of these properties on drug administration, drug action and duration.

Laboratory component: 5 x 3 hour laboratory / workshop sessions.  Laboratory work is sourced from the School of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences Laboratory Manuals.

Students will learn through lectures, problem solving and laboratory practicals and workshops.

Self directed learning is encouraged.

Online resources to encourage pre-laboratory and pre-lecture preparation will be hosted via VLE.

Module Content & Assessment
Assessment Breakdown %
Formal Examination45
Other Assessment(s)55