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Monash University

Monash University Handbook 2011 Undergraduate - Unit

6 points, SCA Band 0 (NATIONAL PRIORITY), 0.125 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.

FacultyFaculty of Science
OfferedNot offered in 2011
Coordinator(s)Associate Professor Wayne Hodgson and Dr Elizabeth Davis


This unit introduces students to the discipline of toxicology. Three major topics are covered- selective toxicity; clinical toxicology and occupational and environmental toxicology. Selective toxicity covers the basis for selectivity and problems associated with resistance development as an introduction to the therapeutic use of toxins. In clinical toxicology, topics in the treatment of overdoses are discussed, as are forensic toxicology, animal venoms and plant toxins. Occupational and environmental toxicology covers the health implications related to exposure to chemical agents. Specific examples are given along with a discussion of how 'risk' maybe assessed and minimised.


On completion of this unit, students will: demonstrate an understanding of the terminology used in the fields of toxicology and toxinology; be able to explain the basis of selective toxicity and the toxic effects of drugs and chemicals; be able to explain the mechanism of action of toxins present in plants and venomous animals, have developed the skills required to critically evaluate toxicological data, have enhanced the skills required to obtain and evaluate scientific data and literature, have enhanced the skills required to work effectively in a team environment, have gained some understanding of the design, performance and evaluation of experiments to determine the mode of action of animal venoms.


Written tests: 65%
Presentation and written assignment: 20%
Practical exercises: 15%

Chief examiner(s)

Dr Elizabeth Davis

Contact hours

Two1-hour lectures and three hours of laboratory or self-directed learning/ tutorial per week


PHA3011 and PHA3021