Predictive Medicine OpenCourseWare: A Free Bachelor Level Class on Predictive Medicine by The Open University

Published Feb 18, 2009

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Students taking the 'Predictive Medicine' OpenCourseWare can learn about advances in genetics and how they can help change the way physicians diagnose and manage diseases. The free introductory course is offered by The Open University as a bachelor level class and can be completed in about four hours.

Predictive Medicine: Course Specifics

Degree Level Free Audio Video Downloads
Undergraduate Yes Yes Yes Yes

Lectures/Notes Study Materials Tests/Quizzes
Yes Yes No

Predictive Medicine: Course Description

The 'Predictive Medicine' OpenCourseWare at The Open University shows students how advanced medical technology in genetics is changing modern healthcare. The free course provides information on how gene therapy, genetic testing and predictive medicine can help physicians diagnose, treat and manage diseases. This advance in genetics can help physicians detect a disease in its early phase instead of waiting for the patient to show symptoms of the disease. One of the examples from the course material showed infants getting blood taken from their heel to screen for phenylketonuria (PKU), a genetic disease that causes mental retardation in new-born babies. Another example of a genetic disease is cystic fibrosis (CF), which can be carried by both parents. This test is administered through a mouthwash to get DNA samples. The genetic test can let the parents know if they carry the CF gene so they can decide if they should have children and eliminate the risk of passing on the gene. The course also discusses how advances in predictive medicine, such as using DNA profiling on single genotypes and gene chips instead of gene screening, can help improve the relationships between patients and physicians. Patients will be more informed about their genetic health and try to find a way to prevent passing on damaged genes and focusing on minimizing that risk.

This OpenCourseWare includes a video, lecture notes and study materials. If you are interested in taking this free course, visit the predictive medicine course page.

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