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Forensic Toxicology

Code: TA07002     Acronym: TF

Classification Keyword
OFICIAL Health Sciences

Instance: 2022/2023 - SP Ícone do Moodle

Active? Yes
Web Page: http://moodle.up.pt/course/view.php?id=3646
Responsible unit: Toxicology Laboratory
Course/CS Responsible: MSc in Analytical, Clinical and Forensic Toxicology

Cycles of Study/Courses

Acronym No. of Students Study Plan Curricular Years Credits UCN Credits ECTS Contact hours Total Time
TACF 18 Official Curriculum 1 - 3 27 81

Teaching Staff - Responsibilities

Teacher Responsibility
Helena Maria Ferreira da Costa Ferreira Carmo

Teaching - Hours

Theoretical classes: 0,58
Tutorial Supervision: 0,46
Type Teacher Classes Hour
Theoretical classes Totals 1 0,58
Helena Maria Ferreira da Costa Ferreira Carmo 0,58

Teaching language

Suitable for English-speaking students


To give an update vision of Forensic Toxicology, adressing on post-mortem analysis to identify the cause of death, to support the behavioral alteration by psychoactive compounds, to monitor drugs of abuse in a forensic perspective, and to carry out epidemiological studies to evaluate the dynamic of the compounds illegally used and/or regulated.

Within the transversal skills, this course aims to contribute to the development of the following skills as learning outcomes:

  • Cognitive Competencies: analytical, critical, reflective and creative thinking;
  • Methodological Competences: time management and planning capacity;
  • Social Competences: interpersonal communication and collaborative work.


Learning outcomes and competences

The student must acquire knowledge and skiils in a modern context of forensic toxicology, namely:

- To interpret toxicological analysis post-mortem to determine the cause of death,
- To recognize the importance of the behavioral toxicology,
- To apply onitoring of drugs of abuse in a forensic perspective
- To interpret a perspective of epidemiological studies assessing the dynamics of the compounds used unlawfully and / or regulated.

Working method



(i) Concept of Forensic Toxicology and modern ambit of application.

(ii) Investigation of a death by intoxication.
Registration of the story and conditions of death.
Selection of samples for analysis, and custody chain.
Toxicological analysis of the biological material.
Post-mortem redistribution metabolism.
Interpretation of the analytical results.

(iii) Validation of human performance analysis under the influence of alcohol, drugs of abuse, and other psychoactive compounds: the role of the Analytical Toxicology.

(iv) Screening of drugs of abuse consumption in special population groups.

(v) Dynamic of the use of psychoactive agents: importance in the behavioral studies, in accidental intoxications, and in their regulation.

(vi) Obtaining samples for analysis: human samples, samples collected in the scenario of death.

(vii) Reference to the principal groups of compounds involved in intoxications in the ambit of forensic toxicology. Relation among occupational, cultural, and regional aspects, and the compound responsible for the intoxications.

(viii) The role of the analytical toxicology in the unequivocal definition of the compound responsible for the intoxication

Mandatory literature

Dinis-Oliveira Ricardo Jorge 340; Toxicologia forense. ISBN: 978-989-693-045-5
James Stuart H. 340; Forensic science. ISBN: 0-8493-1246-9
Klaassen Curtis D. 340; Casarett and Doull99s toxicology. ISBN: 978-0-07-176923-5
Levine B; Principles of Forensic Toxicology, AACC Press, 2010. ISBN: 13: 978-1594250965

Teaching methods and learning activities

The classes, under the coordination of the regent, will have the participation of several specialists / teachers in the specific domains of each subject of the curricular unit. The classes are eminently theoretical and consist of presentations and discussions, in class context and on the theme of the same, promoted by the teachers. The documents supporting the classes are available on e-learning platform (Moodle).

In this UC is also promoted a collaborative work (in groups with a maximum of 3 students) for bibliographic search, analysis, interpretation, discussion and presentation of scientific articles in the area of Forensic Toxicology. This activity will have a tutorial participation by the teachers involved.

The regent is available to attend students by appointment and agreed upon at any time.


Health sciences > Pharmacological sciences > Toicology

Evaluation Type

Distributed evaluation with final exam

Assessment Components

designation Weight (%)
Apresentação/discussão de um trabalho científico 25,00
Exame 75,00
Total: 100,00

Amount of time allocated to each course unit

designation Time (hours)
Apresentação/discussão de um trabalho científico 12,00
Estudo autónomo 54,00
Frequência das aulas 15,00
Total: 81,00

Eligibility for exams

According to the evaluation regulation at the FFUP.

Calculation formula of final grade


Type of evaluation: Distributed evaluation with a final exam:

  • Presentation of a group work (2 or 3 students per group), with tutorial support, on publications in the ambit of Clinical Toxicology (5/20 values)
  • Final examination (15/20 values)

Special assessment (TE, DA, ...)

Students who for special reasons contemplated in the law are not evaluated in the distributed component may be so for the final exam . In these circumstances , the component of the written examination will be held along with the written exam and the work component will be evaluated after the presentation of the final laboratory exam date .

Classification improvement

According to the evaluation regulation at the FFUP.


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