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Physiological Basis of Health and Disease

Physiological Basis of Health and Disease


Courses contributing to this track will introduce primary functions of human cell, tissue, organ and body systems. Throughout this track, students will be able to take specialized courses, providing the opportunity to explore the physiology and/or pathophysiology of the human body. This will allow them to gain a deeper understanding of how the human body functions in health and disease.

This track requires students to take a total of 11 courses.

Coordinator: Dr. Chris Ward


In addition to the following core BHSc courses:

  • PHGY 170 Human Cell Physiology
  • PHGY 215 Principles of Mammalian Physiology I
  • PHGY 216 Principles of Mammalian Physiology II
  • PATH 310 Introduction to Pathology and Molecular Medicine
  • REPD 372 Reproduction and Development
  • REPD 473 Developmental Origins of Health and Disease

Students must take four (4) (at least one must be a 400-level course) of:

CANC 380, Evolutionary Biology of Cancer is designed to introduce students from various biological sciences and allied health backgrounds to cancer as an evolutionary problem.

PHGY 290 Investigation of Human Physiological Responses is designed to enable students to advance their critical thinking and practical laboratory skills through collaborative experimentation. In an integrative laboratory experience, groups of students will learn to investigate how various stimuli impact human physiological responses.

LISC 390, Integrative Laboratory Studies is a two-week intensive multidisciplinary laboratory course conducted in-person on the Queen’s University campus in Kingston, Ontario. Students will learn a number of different laboratory techniques, developing skills in scientific methodology, data acquisition, and interpretation.

LISC 391 Integrated Life Sciences Laboratory II is an intermediate laboratory course on the Physiology and Pharmacology of Cardiorespiratory Sciences and Neuroscience. Students develop skills to acquire and evaluate data and methods.

PATH 381 Clinical Biochemistry covers advanced topics of biochemistry and analytical chemistry in relation to the practice of clinical biochemistry in healthcare. 

PHGY 350 Pathophysiologyis an introductory course in Pathophysiology, in which the underlying functional changes in cells, tissues, and organ systems will be discussed within the context of various diseases and disease processes.

PHGY 355 Biomedical Respiratory Physiology is an intermediate course focussing on biomedical applications of lung biology. Focus is placed on understanding and applying fundamental physiologic concepts in context, including the social, environmental, epidemiologic, and economic factors influencing pulmonary health.

CANC 440 Cancer Biology and Therapeutics provides a consideration of current knowledge and theories about the biology and treatment of cancer.

CRSS 453 Principles of Cardiorespiratory Science I aims to develop a deep understanding of cardiorespiratory function at cellular, molecular, and clinical levels. The course is student-centered through presentations and written reports on topics that cover cutting-edge knowledge of physiology and diseases of the heart, blood vessels, and lungs.

PATH 425 Current Topics in Human Genetics focuses on the significance and implications of genetic variation and its role in disease, development and normal human diversity. In particular, the course will explore the future directions and implications of human genetic research in the post genomic era.

PATH 430 Molecular Basis of Diseaseprovides an in-depth perspective of the pathogenesis of human disease. An integration of the genetic, biochemical, physiologic, anatomic, and general etiologic factors which play a role in the progression of several specific diseases from inception to death or recovery.

PHGY 424 Ion Channels of Excitable Cells examines the electrophysiology and biophysics of neuronal and cardiac membranes; molecular biology, structure, and function of ion channels.


CRSS 456 Molecular and Cellular Basis of Cardiovascular Disease aims to survey the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the pathophysiology of major cardiovascular diseases, and the current and emerging tools used in their diagnosis and treatment. Alterations in tissue AND/OR cell form, function, signaling, metabolism will be discussed to present an integrative view of how cardiovascular diseases develop, progress, are currently treated and may be treated in the future.

CRSS 454, Cardiovascular Sciences will cover the physiology, pharmacology, and anatomy of the cardiovascular system. Topics include integrative mechanisms and pharmacotherapy involved in short-term and long-term control of the circulation in health and disease.

NSCI 483, Neurobiology in Learning and Memory will introduce the human nervous system at an advanced level, with an emphasis on the brain systems supporting learning and memory. The underlying anatomy, physiology, and pharmacology of these systems will be discussed.

Students who began their studies in the BHSc program prior to September 2022 may choose to complete the requirements of the archived version of the Anatomical and Physiological Basis of Health and Disease learning track: Archived April 2022