Aging and age-related diseases: From molecular mechanisms to therapies


All the teaching objectives will be framed in a research context, so that the students will recognize the current challenges associated with each specific objective. These objectives include:

- Identify and explain the molecular, cell and physiological changes associated with ageing and age-related and chronic diseases;

- Discuss key mechanism and models of age-related diseases;

- Identify and explain the main changes in cell, organ and systems in aging and their contribution to chronic diseases;

- Critically discuss the main theories of aging in a historical context as well as its relation with chronic diseases;

- Explain the general principles of the pathophysiology of age-related diseases;

- Explain the influence of nutrition, environmental and genetic factors on aging and age-related diseases;

- Compare research models for the identification of novel therapeutic targets in age-related and chronic diseases;

- Critically discuss the emerging cell-based, genetic or pharmacological therapies for age-related diseases.


General characterization





Responsible teacher

Sofia de Azeredo Gaspar Pereira


Weekly - Available soon

Total - Available soon

Teaching language






Teaching method

This course is based on seminars, designed to provide suitable background information in the various topics that are further explored by the students-led discussions. These debates might be complemented by the studentÂ’s critical analysis of scientific papers on topics presented in seminars. In addiction to these discussions there will be tutorials in which students (individually or in groups) are tutored by a researcher, that is an expert in the topic and that will actively engage and guide discussions with the students.

Evaluation method

Evaluation will include a final project (50% of the final grade), class participation of the student and the ability to argue (20%), to present and discuss on selected topics (20%), success in applying acquired knowledge to pharmacological principles (10%). 

Subject matter

General Principles of Aging; Chronic Diseases associated with aging; Cellular, organ & system changes in aging and chronic diseases; Theories of Aging; Impact of nutrition, environmental and genetic factors on aging and chronic diseases; Models for research in new therapeutic targets in age-related diseases; Emerging cell-based, genetic or pharmacologic therapies; Molecular mechanisms of disease and new therapeutic targets.


Programs where the course is taught: