Module details for Cell Biology & Immunology


This module provides an integrative study of how cells in the body function to defend against injury and disease


The aim of this Module is to provide a holistic view of defence against injury and disease including the mechanisms of cell proliferation and cell cycle control.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this module the student should be able to:

1.  Discuss the roles of the main components of the immune system and explain how they provide a coordinated response to pathogens.

2.  Evaluate the use of antibodies as molecular probes and detection systems.

3.  Describe and explain the mechanism of hypersensitive reactions, autoimmune disorders and immunodeficiency diseases.

4.  Recognise the mechanisms that regulate proliferation and differentiation in eukaryotic cells.

Indicative Content

1 Immune system

Innate & acquired immune systems. Specific & Non- specific defense mechanisms. The immune response. Molecular biology of T & B cell responses to antigens. Clonal selection and expansion. Role of lymphokines. Opsonisation, complement activation., Structure, function of antibody molecules. Classes of immunoglobulins. Pathologies of the immune system including hypersensitive reactions, autoimmune disorders and immunodeficiency diseases. Transplant immunology.

2 Antibodies as Molecular Probes

Diagnostic systems based on antibody-antigen interaction. Agglutination, Precipitation reactions. Antibody titres. Solid phase assays. RIA, ELISA, Immunofluorescence etc. Direct, Indirect and sandwich assays. Use of serological methods in diagnosis of diseases and antibodies for therapeutic applications.

3 Cell biology

Regulation of cell growth and proliferation; cell cycle checkpoints; growth factors, cell communication and signalling, principle of differentiation, tissue repair

Teaching and Learning Work Loads

Teaching and Learning Method Hours
Lecture 24
Tutorial/Seminar 7
Practical Activity 15
Assessment 40
Independent 114
Total 200

Guidance notes

SCQF Level - The Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework provides an indication of the complexity of award qualifications and associated learning and operates on an ascending numeric scale from Levels 1-12 with SCQF Level 10 equating to a Scottish undergraduate Honours degree.

Credit Value – The total value of SCQF credits for the module. 20 credits are the equivalent of 10 ECTS credits. A full-time student should normally register for 60 SCQF credits per semester.


We make every effort to ensure that the information on our website is accurate but it is possible that some changes may occur prior to the academic year of entry. The modules listed in this catalogue are offered subject to availability during academic year 2021/22 , and may be subject to change for future years.