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Drug Delivery
Provider: Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences

Activity no.: 3115-24-00-00 
Enrollment deadline: 01/04/2024
Date and time13.05.2024, at: 09:00 - 17.05.2024, at: 16:30
Regular seats30
Course fee5,400.00 kr.
LecturersCamilla Foged
ECTS credits4.20
Contact personMarianne Wieslander Jørgensen    E-mail address: marianne.joergensen@sund.ku.dk
Enrolment Handling/Course OrganiserPhD administration     E-mail address: phdkursus@sund.ku.dk

Aim and content

This course is free of charge for PhD students at Danish universities (except Copenhagen Business School), and for PhD Students from NorDoc member faculties. All other participants must pay the course fee.

Anyone can apply for the course, but if you are not a PhD student at a Danish university, you will be placed on the waiting list until enrollment deadline. This also applies to PhD students from NorDoc member faculties. After the enrollment deadline, available seats will be allocated to applicants on the waiting list.

Learning objectives

A student who has met the objectives of the course will be able to:

1. The course objectives are i) to give participants an in-depth overview of important fundamental principles for drug delivery

2. and ii) to present methodologies for optimizing delivery of different drug classes ranging from small molecules to complex biopharmaceuticals (peptides, proteins, nucleic acids and vaccines).


One of the main scientific challenges in pharmaceutical development is to deliver the drug compound in a controlled way at the site of action in a therapeutically optimal amount to obtain the desired pharmacological effect. Drug delivery is challenged by the existence of a variety of barriers related to either intrinsic drug characteristics and/or to the physiological environment in the body. It is essential to have a basic understanding of the extent to which these barriers affect the drug bioavailability, i.e. the relative rate and amount of the drug which reaches the target site.

An undesired low bioavailability may be a result of the presence of physiological or metabolic barriers, which a drug compound has to overcome before reaching the target site. Additional hurdles for drug delivery are e.g. an unfavorable biodistribution profile of the drug, physico-chemical drug properties, and a suboptimal pharmaceutical formulation.

Approaches to overcome barriers of drug delivery include the choice of administration route as well as formulation design. When optimizing drug delivery it is important to obtain a fundamental knowledge of the complex drug release characteristics in biological environments, biotransformation, as well as drug transport to the target site. A more rational design of drug compounds and pharmaceutical delivery systems is also enabled by a better understanding of the structural and dynamic functions of biological membrane barriers, e.g. the interplay between lipid bilayer structure, specific membrane transporters and drug molecules or excipients.

The course will cover the following key topics:

• Biological barriers and administration routes
• Metabolic barriers
• Physicochemical characteristics of drug substances
• Advanced drug delivery systems, targeting and stimuli-triggered release (e.g. lipid- and polymer-based delivery systems)
• Delivery of small molecule drugs (e.g. poorly soluble drugs and pro-drugs)
• Delivery of biopharmaceuticals (e.g. peptides, proteins, nucleic acids and vaccines)
• Membrane biophysics in drug delivery
• Imaging in drug delivery
• Industrial perspectives on drug delivery
• Safety and toxicity of nanocarrier systems
• The use of in vitro and in vivo models in drug delivery


The course is mainly offered to PhD students who have completed undergraduate courses in pharmaceutics, chemistry or biology.

Relevance to graduate programmes

The course is relevant to PhD students from the following graduate programmes at the Graduate School of Health and Medical Sciences, UCPH:

Pharmaceutical Sciences (Drug Research Academy)

All graduate programmes




Lectures, group work, writing of report, preparation

Course director

Camilla Foged, Professor, Department of Pharmacy, camilla.foged@sund.ku.dk


Camilla Foged, Professor, UCPH-SUND

Federica Sebastiani, Assistant Professor, UCPH-SUND

Hanne Mørck Nielsen, Professor, UCPH-SUND

Ben Boyd, Professor, UCPH-SUND

Anette Müllertz, Professor, UCPH-SUND

Abhijeet Girish Lokras, Post doc, UCPH-SUND

Martin Malmsten, Professor, UCPH-SUND

Stephen Buckley, Head of ADME Department, Novo Nordisk A/S

Birger Brodin, Professor, UC-SUND

Marco van de Weert, Associate Professor, UC-SUND

Nina Østergaard Knudsen, Riemann

Rene Holm, Professor, SDU

Ken Howard, Aarhus University

Thomas Rades, Professor, UC-SUND


13-17 May 2024

Course location

PharmaSchool, Universitetsparken 2/Jagtvej 160, 2100 Copenhagen O


Please register before 1 April 2024

Expected frequency

Once annually

Seats to PhD students from other Danish universities will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis and according to the applicable rules. Applications from other participants will be considered after the last day of enrolment.

Note: All applicants are asked to submit invoice details in case of no-show, late cancellation or obligation to pay the course fee (typically non-PhD students). If you are a PhD student, your participation in the course must be in agreement with your principal supervisor.

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