Course provided by Future Learn

Study type: Online

Starts: Anytime

Price: Free


Where do drugs come from?

We’ll start by reflecting on the nature of medicines and look at the history of some everyday drugs that have been taken by humans for centuries.

This will show us that many commonly used drugs were found somewhat accidentally – and often without any understanding of the science behind how they worked. Over time, this apparently random process has been refined and improved, so we’ll go on to consider recent advances in identifying potential drugs.

What topics will you cover?

  • What is meant by the term “drug”
  • What do we need drugs for
  • How drugs are discovered: from natural substances to rational drug design
  • What factors have to be considered when developing the chemical molecule with therapeutic potential into a drug that patients can take
  • How is the safety of the drug tested and monitored

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and learn at your own pace. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Who is the course for?

This course is aimed at anyone with an interest in finding out where the drugs that keep us healthy come from. To take the course, the only experience you need is to have taken a drug – even just a throat lozenge.

Who developed the course?

University of Birmingham

The University of Birmingham is a public research university, consistently listed as a leading UK university and ranked among the top 100 in the world.