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18th September 2019

Pharmacy trip and ethics debate, University of Brighton 2019

In September, eleven of our second year chemists visited the laboratories of the School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences at Brighton University. Hosted by Dr Matt Ingram (Principal Lecturer) and Prof Paul Gard (Professor of Experimental Therapeutics and Deputy Head of School), in the morning we prepared a pharmaceutical cream in Dr Ingram’s lab, using the “50/50” technique or “tituration” to ensure an even mix. This was to demonstrate how a pharmaceutical preparation is physically prepared in such a way as to be fit for sale/prescription to the public in terms of its physical makeup (eg consistency and longevity). The practical procedure was from the University’s undergraduate MPharm course.

The afternoon’s session was hosted by Professor Gard and covered the 3R principles governing the use of animals in pharmaceutical testing prior to clinical trials on human subjects. This was a useful extension to the morning’s work as it helped the students, many of whom are interested in pursuing medical careers or biochemistry, appreciate the ethical side of how a pharmaceutical drug is brought to market . It enabled them to look at and grapple with the potential conflict between ensuring compassion to living beings as much as possible, and development of more advanced medical treatments for the major medical problems facing an ageing global population such as Alzheimer’s Disease, Cancer and Cardiovascular Disease. 

Dr Ingram gives the safety briefing

Tom and Edan get kitted out!

Amber and Laura prepare the cream

Andreea and Rebecca get their preparations to the correct temperature and consistency