FRM5560 – New drugs and drug delivery in cancer therapy

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Changes in the course due to coronavirus

Autumn 2020 we plan for teaching and examinations to be conducted as described in the course description and on semester pages. However, changes may occur due to the corona situation. You will receive notifications about any changes at the semester page and/or in Canvas.

Spring 2020: Teaching and examinations was digitilized. See changes and common guidelines for exams at the MN faculty spring 2020.

Course content

The course aims to give the participants an overview of new drugs and drug delivery systems that are approved or under clinical evaluation for treatment of cancer. The treatment of cancer is today primarily based on surgery, ionizing radiation and chemotherapy. Despite several decades of attempts to optimize these treatment regimens the mortality and morbidity is still high for many cancer indications. This together with better understanding of cancer development has paved way for alternative drugs and drug delivery technologies with potentially better specificity and efficacy. These drugs may be devided into biotherapeutics, small molecular targeted chemotherapeutics and delivery technologies to improve specificity and efficacy of drugs. The biotherapeutics include monoclonal antibodies, immunotoxins, peptides and mRNA (for cancer vaccines), DAN (for gene therapy), and oligonucleotides (for gene silencing). The new small molecular targeted chemotherapeutics inhibits in most cases signal pathways which are important for the cancer cells to grow in an uncontrolled maner. Small molecular photosensitizing agents as used in photodynamic therapy and photochemical internalization exert their specificity through the light-directed activation of the photosensitizers.

Learning outcome

The main goal is to give the students a broad overview of the most important groups of new drugs and drug delivery systems for treatment of cancer. Drug design and mechanisms for therapeutic effects will be emphasized. The main principles for cancer development as basis for understanding the mechanisms of action of the drugs will also be presented.

Admission to the course

The course is primarily open for students who have been admitted to the Department of Pharmacy at the University of Oslo. If there is space available then others may also apply to take the course as long as their academic background is adequate.

Formal prerequisite knowledge

No obligatory prerequisites beyond the minimum requirements for entrance to higher education in Norway.


Lectures or study groups.

Access to teaching

A student who has completed compulsory instruction and coursework and has had these approved, is not entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework. A student who has been admitted to a course, but who has not completed compulsory instruction and coursework or had these approved, is entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework, depending on available capacity.

The course may be cancelled if the number of enrolled students are low.


4 hours written exam/oral exam depending on the number of students.

Examination support material

Casio FX-991EX calculators are handed out to all exam candidates at the beginning of the exam.

Language of examination

You may submit your response in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English. Application for assignment text in English may be sent to

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Resit an examination

This course offers both postponed and resit of examination. Read more:

Special examination arrangements, use of sources, explanations and appeals

See more about examinations at UiO

Last updated from FS (Common Student System) Aug. 15, 2020 5:10:55 PM

Facts about this course


The course is last held autumn 2020


Examination is last held autumn 2022

Teaching language