SC BIOL 110 - 3, The Molecules of Life (54 pages)

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3, The Molecules of Life



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3, The Molecules of Life

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Chapter 3


Pages:
54
School:
University Of South Carolina-Columbia
Course:
Biol 110 - General Biology

Unformatted text preview:

Carbon The Backbone of Life Although cells are 70 95 water the rest consists mostly of carbon based compounds Carbon is unparalleled in its ability to form large complex and diverse molecules Proteins DNA carbohydrates and other molecules that distinguish living matter are all composed of carbon compounds Organic chemistry is the study of compounds that contain carbon and such organic compounds range from simple molecules to colossal ones Most organic compounds contain hydrogen atoms in addition to carbon atoms Copyright 2008 Pearson Education Inc publishing as Pearson Benjamin Cummings Carbon atoms can partner with atoms other than hydrogen for example Carbon dioxide CO2 Urea CO NH2 2 Carbon chains vary in length and shape Hydrocarbons are organic molecules consisting of only carbon and hydrogen Many organic molecules such as fats have hydrocarbon components Hydrocarbons can undergo reactions that release a large amount of energy Copyright 2008 Pearson Education Inc publishing as Pearson Benjamin Cummings Fig 4 5 Ethane Propane a Length Butane b Branching 1 Butene 2 Butene c Double bonds 2 Methylpropane commonly called isobutane Cyclohexane d Rings Benzene Fig 4 6 Fat droplets stained red 100 m a Mammalian adipose cells b A fat molecule The Molecules of Life All living things are made up of four classes of large biological molecules carbohydrates lipids proteins and nucleic acids Within cells small organic molecules are joined together to form larger molecules Macromolecules are large molecules composed of thousands of covalently connected atoms Each cell has thousands of different kinds of macromolecules Macromolecules vary among cells of an organism vary more within a species and vary even more between species Copyright 2008 Pearson Education Inc publishing as Pearson Benjamin Cummings Macromolecules are polymers built from monomers A polymer is a long molecule consisting of many similar building blocks These small building block molecules are called monomers An



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