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Monash University Handbook 2010 Undergraduate - Area of Study

All areas of study information should be read in conjunction with the relevant course entry in the Handbook. The units listed for this area of study relate only to the 'Requirements' outlined in the Faculty of Science component of any bachelors double degrees.

Managing facultyFaculty of Science
Offered byDepartment of Immunology
Campus(es)Clayton
Course coordinatorAssociate Professor Jennifer Rolland and Dr John Emmins, (Department of Immunology)

Description

Immunology examines our defences against foreign invaders such as viruses and bacteria. Knowledge of immune cells and molecules leads to vaccine development and also therapy of immune disorders such as allergy, autoimmunity and transplant rejection.

The immune system has evolved to provide the host with a highly sophisticated strategy for defence against invading micro-organisms including viruses, bacteria and larger parasites. There is also evidence that the immune system can target cancer cells and thus has a fundamental role to play in maintaining host homeostasis.

Immunology is the study of the cells and molecules that provide an effective and highly specific response to a wide array of foreign antigens. Knowledge of the mechanisms for coordination and regulation of the immune system is an exciting and rapidly advancing frontier with major implications for vaccine development and treatment of immune disorders. There are several diseases associated with disorders of the immune system, including allergy, autoimmunity and immunodeficiency such as following HIV infection. Transplant rejection is also an example of an unwanted immune response. Recent insight into the molecular basis for these disorders is leading the way to more effective and selective treatments.

Immunology links with other branches of biology such as pathology, biochemistry and microbiology, and units in these disciplines are an excellent complement to immunology.

Objectives

Immunology sequence

Learning outcomes

On completion of the sequence in immunology students will be able to:

  • define the structural and cellular components of the immune system
  • describe in detail how the immune system generates specificity and diversity
  • comprehend the cellular and molecular interactions and regulation of the immune response
  • apply knowledge of immune defences to host control of pathogenic infections
  • define the pathogenesis, diagnosis and treatment of disorders associated with an excessive, defective or unwarranted immune response
  • demonstrate proficiency in immunological techniques
  • plan, execute and report a mini-research project
  • demonstrate skills in searching the literature and assignment writing.
Graduate attributes

Graduates who have completed a major sequence in immunology will have a thorough understanding of the principles and practice of immunology with applications to research, teaching, diagnostic and commercial careers. They will be able to review the scientific literature and have developed oral and written communication skills of importance for a broad range of biomedical fields. They will be well placed to embark on a research career by undertaking the honours and postgraduate studies on offer in Immunology and relevant disciplines.

Immunology and human pathology sequence

Learning outcomes

On completion of this sequence, students will be able to:

  • define the key structural and cellular components of the immune system
  • describe how the immune system generates specificity and diversity
  • comprehend mechanisms for regulation of the immune response
  • apply knowledge of immune defences to host control of pathogenic infections
  • understand the principles of immunological techniques
  • understand basic pathological processes
  • recognise pathological changes associated with inflammatory, immunological, vascular and neoplastic diseases
  • understand tissue pathology associated with important diseases of the cardiovascular, respiratory, gastrointestinal, endocrine, urinary, haematopoietic, female and male genital systems
  • use the microscope to identify normal and abnormal tissue histology
  • demonstrate skills in problem solving relating to specific diseases and disease processes and be able to relate these to the clinical presentation
  • demonstrate skills in searching the literature and assignment writing.
Graduate attributes

Graduates who have completed a major sequence in Immunology plus Pathology will have an understanding of the principles and practice of immunology and pathology with applications to research, teaching, diagnostic and commercial careers. They will be able to review the scientific literature and have developed written communication skills of importance for a broad range of biomedical fields. They will be well placed to embark on a research career by undertaking the honours and postgraduate studies on offer in relevant disciplines.

Units

Level two

  • IMM2011 Function of the immune system

Level three

  • IMM3031 Molecular and cellular immunology
  • IMM3042 Clinical immunopathology
  • IMM3051 Principles of applied immunology
  • IMM3062 Clinical and research laboratory immunology

Sequence requirements

Immunology

Minor sequence in immunology (24 points)

Major sequence in immunology (48 points)

Immunology and human pathology

Major sequence in immunology and human pathology (48 points)

Details of the BCH, DEV, HUP, and PHY units, and some related sequences, are described in the biochemistry, developmental biology, human pathology, microbiology, molecular biology and physiology entries in this section of the Handbook.

* Note: MOL2011 is a prerequisite for HUP3011; DEV2011 is a prerequisite for DEV2022.

Recommendations

Level three

The Department of Immunology offers four immunology units at level three. In each semester, students can take one theory-based immunology unit (IMM3031/IMM3042) and one practical-based unit (IMM3051/IMM3062). Together, these units provide an excellent coverage of all aspects of immunology, and students will be well equipped to undertake a career in research, applied or diagnostic immunology.

Honours

Students with appropriate level of performance in relevant level three units may undertake an honours program in 'Medical biology and immunology' at fourth year. This program incorporates a major research project on a topic selected from a wide range in immunology, immunopathology and medical biology conducted in the Department of Immunology or affiliated institutes. There is also minor coursework comprising theory modules and seminar presentations.

Full details regarding entrance requirements and course structure for honours is described in the course entry in this Handbook for the course 0051 Honours degree of Bachelor of Science.