Coh3 chemical name

Classified in Biology

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2.1 Molecules to metabolism  

 ∑ - Molecular biology explains living processes in terms of the chemical    substances involved.

  • Involves the explaining of biological processes from the structures of the molecules and how they interact with each other
  • There are many molecules important to living organisms including water, carbohydrates, lipids, proteins and nucleic acids
  • Proteins are one of the most varied macromolecules, performing many cellular functions, including catalyzing metabolic reactions (enzymes)
  • The relationship between genes and proteins is important as well
  • Molecular biologists break down biochemical processes into their component parts (reductionism)
  • When they look at the sum of all these reactions as a whole, they can study the emergent properties of that system 

Urea as an example of a compound that is produced by living organisms but can also be artificially synthesized.

  • Urea is a component of urine which is produced when there is an excess of amino acids in the body; way to secrete nitrogen
  • A series of enzyme catalyzed reactions produce urea in the liver, where it is transported by the blood to the kidney, where it is filtered out and excreted in the urine.
  • Urea can be produced artificially through different chemical reactions; however, the product is the same.
  • Urea is mainly used as a nitrogen source in fertilizers

∑ - Carbon atoms can form four covalent bonds allowing a diversity of stable compounds to exist.

  • Carbon has a few unique bonding properties - the most important of which is its ability to form long chains of carbon. No other element can bond like carbon does.
  • The reason carbon can do this is that carbon-carbon bonds are extremely strong.  This allows carbon to make up many of the basic building blocks of life (fats, sugars, etc). 
  • Since carbon-carbon bonds are strong and stable, carbon can form an almost infinite number of compounds
  • In fact, there are more known carbon-containing compounds than all the compounds of the other chemical elements combined except those of hydrogen (because almost all organic compounds contain hydrogen too).
  • Carbon can also form rings eg. Glucose
  • The simplest form of an organic molecule is the hydrocarbon—a large family of organic molecules that are composed of hydrogen atoms bonded to a chain of carbon atoms.  Eg. Methane
  • All bonding in hydrocarbons is covalent
  • Covalent Bonds are chemical bonds formed by the sharing of a pair of electronsbetween atoms. The nuclei of two different atoms are attracting the same electrons.
  • Carbon can form single, double and triple bonds
  • Carbon has 4 valance electrons in it's outer shell.

∑ - Life is based on carbon compounds including carbohydrates, lipids, proteins and nucleic acids.

  • Carbohydrates are composed of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen
  • The general formula for carbohydrates is (CH2O)n.
  • Many carbohydrates are used for energy or structural purposes


  • Lipids are compounds that are insoluble in water but soluble in nonpolar solvents.
  • Some lipids function in long-term energy storage. Animal fat is a lipid that has six times more energy per gram than carbohydrates.
  • Lipids are also an important component of cell membranes.
  • Some examples of lipids are triglycerides, steroids, waxes and phospholipids
  • Animal fats (saturated) are solid at room temperature and plant fats (unsaturated) are liquid at room temperature


  • Proteins are composed of one or more chains of amino acids
  • All proteins are composed of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen
  • Proteins are distinguished by their “R” groups. Some of these also contain sulphur

Nucleic Acids

  • Nucleic acids are composed of smaller units called nucleotides, which are linked together to form a larger molecule (nucleic acid).
  • Each nucleotide contains a base, a sugar, and a phosphate group. The sugar is deoxyribose (DNA) or ribose (RNA). The bases of DNA are adenine, guanine, cytosine, and thymine. Uracil substitutes for Thymine in RNA
  • They are made from carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and phosphorus

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