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PATH302 Cancer Biology

A multidisciplinary approach to describing current knowledge and approaches to studying cancer and its treatment, including perspectives from pathology, genetics, cell biology, immunology and clinical oncology.

This paper will provide advanced knowledge of the aetiology and pathology of human cancer. This paper will provide a foundation for postgraduate study in the area of cancer and is useful for those going on to professional programmes in the health sciences.

Paper title Cancer Biology
Paper code PATH302
Subject Pathology
EFTS 0.15
Points 18 points
Teaching period Semester 2 (On campus)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,141.35
International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.

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(One of ANAT 241, BIOC 221, PATH 201) and 72 further 200-level points
Recommended Preparation
GENE 222, BIOC 352
Recommended Preparation or Concurrent Study
GENE 313, BIOC 353
Schedule C

Suitable for undergraduates with a background in biomedical science, health sciences or in related subjects.

Prerequisites: One of ANAT 241, BIOC 221 or PATH 201
Recommended Preparation: GENE 222, BIOC 352


Teaching staff

Convenor: Associate Professor Heather Cunliffe

Teaching contributions come from the Departments of Pathology (DSM), Biochemistry (BMS) and Medicine (DSM).

Paper Structure
The paper has modules in:
  • Anatomic and histopathology
  • Clinical oncology
  • Cell and molecular biology
  • Genetics and genomics
  • Bioinformatics
  • Immunology
Two guest lectures are included to incorporate leading-edge and topical areas.
Teaching Arrangements
Two lectures per week (over 13 weeks) and two laboratory classes per week for the first half of the semester.

Recommended: Robbins and Cotran Pathologic Basis of Disease, available online through the University Library.

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Critical thinking, Ethics, Research.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete this paper will:

  • Be able to critically evaluate and discuss central ideas and theoretical components relating to cancer from the disciplines of pathology, cell biology, immunology, genetics and clinical oncology
  • Demonstrate appropriate practical skills in techniques commonly used in the characterisation and investigation of human cancers
  • Be able to evaluate data produced in the laboratory and prepare coherent and informative laboratory reports
  • Be able to identify, critically evaluate and integrate the scientific literature in areas related to cancer research and clearly describe their findings

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Semester 2

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system

Computer Lab

Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Thursday 14:00-17:50 34
Friday 14:00-17:50 34


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Monday 11:00-11:50 28-34, 36-41
B1 Tuesday 11:00-11:50 29-34, 36-41
D1 Thursday 16:00-16:50 28
E1 Friday 14:00-14:50 29


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Thursday 14:00-17:50 29-33
Friday 14:00-17:50 30-32
Friday 15:00-17:50 29