Accessibility statement

Cancer cell & molecular biology - BIO00068H

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  • Department: Biology
  • Module co-ordinator: Prof. Bob White
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: H
  • Academic year of delivery: 2021-22

Module summary

The cellular and molecular abnormalities of cancer will be analyzed and the latest theraputic advances.

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Autumn Term 2021-22 to Summer Term 2021-22

Module aims

This module will review current knowledge, underpinning principles and recurrent themes in the molecular and cellular biology of cancer. We will discuss the key features of cancer biology, such as deregulated cell cycle progression, growth, invasion and metastasis. A major area of focus will be the mechanisms of action of oncogenes (e.g. Myc) and tumour suppressors (e.g. p53). The module will include the importance of cancer stem cells and the tumour microenvironment, the spread of cancer and therapeutic advances. It will present general principles and key molecules, describing how they achieve their functions. All stages will be illustrated with examples that are of particular interest and importance. A key feature will be molecular strategies for cancer therapy. Experiments from cancer research papers will be examined in detail to provide training in comprehension, criticism and data interpretation.

Module learning outcomes

1. Interpret data from experiments investigating cancer.

2. Discuss the molecular and cellular basis of cancer.

3. Evaluate therapeutic approaches in current use and development in cancer.


Task Length % of module mark
Online Exam - 24 hrs (Centrally scheduled)
Cancer Cell & Molecular Biology
8 hours 100

Special assessment rules



Task Length % of module mark
Online Exam - 24 hrs (Centrally scheduled)
Cancer Cell & Molecular Biology
8 hours 100

Module feedback

Cohort-level feedback will be provided on performance in closed exams and made available via the VLE. Histograms of module marks will be posted on the notice boards outside the Biology Student Services office. Individual marks will be made available to you and your supervisor via e:vision. Exam scripts will be made available at the end of either the Spring or Summer terms. You should take the opportunity to discuss your marks and feedback with your supervisor.


During the teaching of the module you will receive feedback that may be at a whole class or individual level. Forms of feedback may include: model answers and discussion of workshop questions, summaries of performance in practicals, VLE-based quizzes, individual spoken comments during workshops, individual written comments on formative work.  

Indicative reading

These are available through the VLE module site.

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.