Predoctoral Course Catalog


Dental Curriculum Threads

Molecular and Cellular Basis of Disease

Course Director: Whasun “Sun” Oh Chung
Credits: 5
Quarters/Yr of Program: Autumn / 1

Course Overview

This course covers a broad range of topics in molecular and cellular biology, including cell basics, enzymes, protein/carbohydrate/lipid metabolism, cancer, neurobiology, pharmacology, and histology. Students will learn how various diseases are caused and regulated at molecular and cellular levels. Successful completion of this course will help prepare students to assess what cellular changes are responsible for diseases and how to intervene in diseases that are of importance in dentistry.

Learning Objectives

The student who successfully completes this course will be able to:

1. Describe the “central dogma” of molecular biology and the informational roles DNA, RNA, and
protein play in disease development.
2. Illustrate carbohydrate, protein, and lipid metabolism and how each metabolic regulation leads
to certain physiological outcomes.
3. Explain the functions of DNA methylation, covalent histone modifications and non-coding RNAs
in producing epigenetic effects, and outcomes of specific epigenetic changes on gene
4. Differentiate how defects in DNA repair pathways lead to specific syndromes and how these
defects could be remedied.
5. Assess various aspects of cancer pathophysiology and how each leads to a projected outcome.
6. Compare drug/receptor interactions and the dose/response/therapeutic window.
7. Describe the histological types, structural characteristics, and functions of epithelia.
8. Define the anatomic (central and peripheral) and functional (somatic and autonomic) divisions
of the nervous system.
9. Analyze the cell injury, inflammation, and repair processes and how each contributes to
homeostasis in health and disease.

UWSOD Competencies: C-01, C-03, C-08, C-11, C-12, C-13, C-14, C-15, C-16, C-17, C-23, C-24, C25, C-26, C-30, C-31, CE-02, CE-03, CE-06

Date last updated: 2022-02-17