Teaching Outline of Medicinal Chemistry

(International Undergraduate Program for Pharmacy)

Course Code:0701414     Credit: 6.5

Lecture: 72 course hours             Experiment: 32course hours


Medicinal chemistry is the science that deals with the discovery or design of new therapeutic agents and their development into useful medicines. It is a chemistry-based discipline, also involving aspects of biological, medical and pharmaceutical sciences. It involves the discovery of new biologically active compounds, the construction of structure-activity relationships, the synthesis, and the study of theirabsorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion (ADME), the interpretation of their mode of action at the molecular level.


Essential Requirement:

1. Be familiar withnomenclature of the drugs, includingcommon name, official name and generic name, chemical structure, physical-chemical properties and categorization

2. Be familiar with the basic drug design principles, approaches of structural modification and structure-activity relationship of drugs.

3. Be familiar with the mechanism of action, ADME, indication and adverse reaction of drugs.

4. Master at Organicsynthesis of typical drugs

5. Understand the progress in new drug history and discovery


Chapter 1 Introduction (2hours)

1. Origins and history of Medicinal Chemistry

2. Introduction of Medicinal Chemistry

Chapter 2 Review of Organic Functional Groupsfor Medicinal Chemistry (22hours)

Goal andRequirements:To be able to predict the in vitro (shelf) properties and in vivo(metabolic) properties of a drug, one may be able to successfully predict many of the Propertiesof a drug based upon the summation of the physical-chemical properties of the individual functional groups present in the drug.

You must be able to identify the commonorganic functional groups.Requires the use of appropriate nomenclature: Common or generic nomenclature and Official nomenclature (IUPAC). You must be able to list the physical-chemical properties of the functional group. You must be able to identify metabolic reactions common to the functional group.


  1. Water Solubility and Chemical Bonding
  2. Intermolecular Chemical Bonding
  3. Alkanes (CnH2n+2) & Alkenes (CnH2n), Aliphatic and Aromatic Hydrocarbons, Alcohols, Phenols, ether, thioether, aldehyde, ketone, Amines and carboxylic acids, Functional Derivatives of Carboxylic Acids, Sulfonic acids and Sulfonamides, Nitrogen Functional Groups, Heterocycles
  4. Oligonucleotides and Nucleic Acids, Proteins
  5. Empiric Method in Predicting Water Solubility
  6. Stereochemistry &Stereoisomers, Optical activity and structure of compounds
  7. Drug Metabolism and Pharmcokinetics

Chapter 3Introductory and Basic Topic inDrugand Drug Targets (2hours)

Goal and Requirements:

To be able to understand drug classification methods, the Physico-chemical properties in relation to biological action, drug-receptor Interaction, Nomenclature of Drug Substances.


  1. Drug Classification according to their origin, their medicinal use, the treatment of different types of diseases
  2. Drug action and the interaction of drug molecules with either normal or abnormal physiological processes, Structurally Non-Specific and Specific Activity
  3. Drug-receptor Interaction,
  4. Structural features of drugs and their pharmacological activity
  5. Classical and non-classical bioisosteres
  6. Naming of drugs-a chemical name, a generic name, and a brand name

Chapter 4 Drug Targets(6hours)

Goal and Requirements:

Thechapter will go over drug targets in biological systems from a medicinal chemistry perspective. The purpose of this chapter is to give an overview of the molecular structures of major macromolecular targets in the body. The main drug targets in the body are normally large molecules. Macromolecule is the word used to describe large molecules with high molecular weights. These large molecules are made up of smaller subunits. Examples of macromolecules include proteins and nucleic acids. Studentsare required to knowthe functional groups and structural features of the macromolecules, and understand the possible interactions that can take place between the drug and its target at the binding site. Armed with this knowledge, medicinal chemists can introduce structural modifications to a lead compound and optimize drug-target interactions.


  1. Proteins: The Basics of Protein Structure, How Do Proteins Decide How to Fold? Protein Targets can take the form of either Receptors or Enzymes.
  2. Agonist/Antagonist, Enzyme inhibitors, Enzymes and Receptors Compared
  3. Proteins As DrugTargets:Enzymes
  4. Nucleic Acids as Drug Targets


Goal and Requirements:

The chapter will go over general principles in the DRUG DESIGN AND DEVELOPMENT


  1. Identify target disease
  2. Identify drug target
  3. Establish testing procedures
  4. Find a lead compound
  5. Structure Activity Relationships (SAR)
  6. Identify a pharmacophore
  7. Drug design- optimising target interactions
  8. Drug design - optimising pharmacokinetic properties
  9. Toxicological and safety tests
  10. Chemical development and production
  11. Patenting and regulatory affairs
  12. Clinical trials

Chapter 6 Antibiotics and Antimicrobial Agents (6 hours)

1. b-lactam Antibiotics

2. Tetracycline Antibiotics

3. Aminoglycoside Antibiotics

4. Macrolide Antibiotics

5. Chloramphenicol

6. Quinolones

Chapter 7 Antineoplastic Agents (4hours)

1.Biological Alkylating Agents


3.Antitumor Antibiotics

4. Anticancer Compounds from Plants

Chapter 8 Other Chemotherapeutic Agents (2hours)

1. Antiparasitic Agents
2. Antifungal Drugs
3. Antimycobacterial Agents
4. Antiviral Agents and Protease Inhibitors
Chapter 9 Opioid Analgesics (4hours)

  1. Morphine
  2. Codeine
  3. Opioid Receptors-The mu receptor
  4. Structure-Activity Relationships
  5. Scheduling’ of Drugs


  1. Nicotinic receptor
  2. Muscarinic receptor - G Protein coupled receptor
  3. Cholinergic agonists
  4. Binding site (muscarinic)
  5. Active conformation of acetylcholine
  6. Design of cholinergic agonists
  7. Cholinergic Antagonists (Muscarinic receptorand Nicotinic receptor)
  8. Acetylcholinesterase

Chapter 11   The Art of Drug Synthesis (12hours)

Goal and Requirements:

Understand the role of synthetic chemistry in drug discovery,to be able to master the common and important organic reactions fordrug synthesis, have the ability to design synthetic routes for small molecules.



  1. Synthetic Chemistry in Drug Discovery
  2. Basic Organic Reactions of Drug Synthesis
  3. Classical Drug Synthesis

Chapter 12 Experiments (32)

Goal and Requirements:

The purpose of thisexperimentclassis to comprehendelementary theory andknowledge of medicinalchemistry bettertograspfundamentalmethods ofsynthesisand structural modification of drugs, to be familiar with how to design the experiment planandhowtoselecttheexperiment condition, to understand application of principle ofmodernnewtechnologyandmethod in medicinal chemistry experiment, tostandardandconsolidatemanipulativetechnologyand relevant theory knowledge of organicchemistryexperimentabilityofanalyzingand solving actualproblems, and good custom of scientific research.


1. The Preparation of Phenytoin Sodium (8)

2. ThePreparation of Nitrendipine I (8)

3. The Preparation of Nitrendipine II (8)

4. ThePreparation of Sodium Sulfacetamide (8)