Free Online Course on Medicinal Chemistry:The Molecular Basis of Drug Discovery

Free Online Course on Medicinal Chemistry:The Molecular Basis of Drug Discovery

Davidson College is glad to announce you a free online course name as “Medicinal Chemistry: The Molecular Basis of Drug Discovery”. This medicinal chemistry course explores how chemists modify a molecule’s structure to design a safe and effective drug. You will understand a brief history of drug discovery and introduces the modern drug approval process.Then, you will transition to learning about receptors and enzymes, the body’s molecules most often targeted by drugs. You will also discuss the topics of pharmacokinetics (drug absorption, elimination, and half-life) and metabolism. You will learn how potential drug molecules are identified and subsequently optimized into safe and effective drugs.

This course will start on October 2, 2017.

Course Summary

  • Duration: 7 weeks
  • Commitment: 6-8 hours per week
  • Subject:  Medicine
  • Institution:  Davidson College
  • Languages: English
  • Price: Free
  • Session: Starts on October 2, 2017
  • Requirement:  Anyone
  • Certificate Available: Yes

Who Developed the Course

  • About University: Davidson College provides one of the nation’s most intellectually rigorous undergraduate experiences. Davidson’s renowned faculty and innovative trans-disciplinary programs have earned the college distinction as one of the most research-active liberal arts institutions in the country, as well as consistent national recognition for overall quality, faculty-student research collaboration, and teaching.
  • Mission of University: The college is committed to continuing this vital relationship. The primary purpose of Davidson College is to assist students in developing humane instincts and disciplined and creative minds for lives of leadership and service.

Target Audience

High school level chemistry and biology and some experience with organic chemistry. Basic math skills (logarithms and exponential functions) are also recommended.

Where Could This Lead You

  • Importance of the Subject in Today’s Scenario: Medicinal chemistry and pharmaceutical chemistries disciplines at the intersection of chemistry, especially synthetic organic chemistry, and pharmacology and various other biological specialties, where they are involved with design, chemical synthesis and development for the market of pharmaceutical agents, or bioactive.
  • Your Career Option: After successfully completing the course you can build your career in the following:
  1. Associate Professor, Assistant Professor
  2. Executive – Chemistry Research And Development
  3. Research Chemist, Senior Research Chemist, Lab Technician
  4. Botanical Chemist / Plant Chemist / Herbalist / Phytochemist

Get Extra Benefits

Pursue a Verified Certificate to highlight the knowledge and skills you gain ($49)

  • Official and Verified: Receive an instructor-signed certificate with the institution’s logo to verify your achievement and increase your job prospects
  • Easily Shareable: Add the certificate to your CV or resume, or post it directly on LinkedIn
  • Proven Motivator: Give yourself an additional incentive to complete the course

How to Join This Course

You should register yourself through the given link of join this free online course:

Course Format

Week 1: Pre-Regulatory Medicine and the Drug Approval Process

  • Early natural products and synthetic molecules used as drugs
  • Safety issues in the first drugs
  • Modern drug discovery and approval process
  • Intellectual property issues with drugs

Week 2: Drug Targets

  • Structure of proteins
  • Enzymes, enzymatic activity, and inhibition
  • Receptors and molecules that modulate their activity
  • Examination 1

Week 3: Pharmacokinetics

  • Drug transport in the blood
  • Clearance
  • Volume of distribution
  • Compartment modeling

Week 4: Metabolism

  • Types of metabolic reactions
  • Genetic and population effects
  • Prodrugs
  • Examination 2

Week 5: Binding, Structure, and Diversity

  • Intermolecular forces
  • Drug-target complementarity
  • Molecular diversity and chemical libraries
  • Combinatorial chemistry

Week 6: Lead Discovery

  • Drug screening
  • Filtering hits to find leads
  • Existing drugs and natural products as leads

Week 7: Lead Optimization

  • Functional group replacements
  • Alkyl group replacements
  • Isosteres and bioisosteres
  • Peptidomimetics
  • Examination 3

Learning Outcomes

Students will gain skills:

  • How to measure the activity of enzymes and receptors
  • Methods for modeling a drug’s half-life
  • How to predict and alter the metabolism of a molecule
  • Techniques for discovering molecules with desired biological activity
  • Approaches for optimizing a molecule into a safe and effective drug

Who Will You Learn With

  • Erland Stevens: Erland Stevens earned his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor in 1997 under Will Pearson in the area of nitrogen heterocycles. He then pursued postdoctoral studies at The Scripps Research Institute with K. Barry Sharpless. In 1998 Stevens joined the chemistry faculty at Davidson College.

Suggested Reading

You can cite these books:

  • An Introduction to Medicinal Chemistry by Graham L. Patrick
  • Fundamentals of Medicinal Chemistry by Gareth Thomas
  • Principles of medicinal chemistry by William O. Foye
  • Medicinal Chemistry by Ashutosh Kar


  • Importance of Course: At the end of this course you will gain a better understanding of the drug discovery process to learn how safe, effective drugs are developed and optimized.
  • Importance of Certificate: By the Certificate of Achievement you will be able to prove your success when applying for jobs or courses. You can display it on your LinkedIn or CV.

Detailed Information

For more information about the course, you may visit the given link:!