ACE inhibitors are very widely used antihypertensive drugs. Explain their mechanisms of action, their beneficial effects and their side effects.
Essay The essay will be of 1,000 words (excluding the references) and the topic will be chosen from the list below. For references, I suggest you start with a text book or review article (secondary literature) to give you an overview of the field then you can move to experimental papers (primary literature). For your essay I would expect you to cite about 6-10 recent articles from books or refereed scientific journals. Postings on Web sites may only be used if they come from a reputable source (e.g., Heart Foundation, National Health and Medical Research Council). The essay is due before the mid-semester break so I suggest you start on it immediately. If you are having any problems with the essay please talk to your tutors. They are always available in the practical classes. Remember that in answering the questions posed in each topic you must concentrate on physiological concepts. Writing the essay The first step is to choose a topic that interests you. This may involve selecting a few possible topics from the list on pg 11 and doing some preliminary reading. The next step is to interpret the essay topic so that you understand exactly the questions to answer. We will use an essay about the drug Vioxx as an example. The drug Vioxx was a very widely used anti-inflammatory drug until it was removed from the market when it was shown to increase the risk of heart attack. Explain why Vioxx was developed and the proposed mechanism of its deleterious effects on the cardiovascular system. To search the literature for information relevant to the topic I usually use the databases “pubmed” or Science Direct (or both) and in many instances you will be able to download relevant articles from these sites. From the available journal articles select 10 or 12 that appear to be most relevant and read through them to develop an overview of the topic and then select around 6-10 articles that are most pertinent. Some of these articles will be reviews (secondary literature) and some should be reports of experimental studies (primary literature). In the case of Vioxx, reports of clinical trials would be important primary literature. Read these articles carefully and make notes in your own words of their content. You should then set out a preliminary plan using section headings (subheadings). The plan should organise the information into a coherent, logical sequence (telling the story). For the Vioxx essay it may look like this Introduction ? Purpose of anti-inflammatory drugs ? Vioxx usage around the world ? (don’t need state the contents of your essay because you only have 1000 words) Body ? COX1 and COX2 inhibitors ? gastrointestinal damage ? COX2 selective inhibitors designed to reduce gastrointestinal effect ? Clinical trial identifies cardiovascular risks ? Effect of Vioxx on the cardiovascular system Conclusion ? Inherent risks with systemic drugs Check over your subheadings to make sure that you are answering the questions posed in the title. Using your notes complete each of your sections. Your purpose here is to interpret the data and explain it in simple, clear English. When you have trouble expressing a concept it is often because you don’t really understand it yourself. If a diagram will help the reader’s understanding include it. Once you have completed your first draft, read it through carefully and be prepared to make major changes if necessary. I suggest you read it through to a friend to see if it makes sense to them. Editing the draft is best done on a hard copy, not the screen and you should check the relevance of the material you have included and the coherence and logic of each paragraph and the essay as a whole. All the time you should be considering whether you have answered the questions posed in the topic. Check the spelling and grammar. Try and keep the sentences short, remove technical jargon where possible and choose familiar, simple words rather than long, complicated or unusual ones. Layout Please type the essay in 12pt, double spaced and with a 4-5 cm left hand margin and don’t forget to keep a copy for yourself. Submission Internal students should submit their essays via the relevant assignment box for their unit, which will be located in the reception area of the Science Centre (Room 101, which is on the ground floor at the western end of Building E7A). The Centre opens from 8.30 am to 5.30 pm on Monday to Friday. Assignments are to be submitted by 9 am on the date specified and must include a completed and signed cover sheet stapled to the front cover. The Assignment Cover Sheet can be downloaded through the iLearn site. External students should submit or email practical assignments and the essay to the Centre for Open Education. To submit external assignments online go to www.coe.mq.edu.au/coeassign.html and follow the instructions there. All students must also submit and electronic topic to Turnitin. There is a link to Turnitin under assessment in iLearn for BIOL247. Requests for extensions should be made to Julia Raftos. Extensions will be considered on an individual basis. ??
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