Chapter 1: the foundations of Biochemistry

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1

What are the distinguishing features of living organisms?

1) A high degree of chemical complexity and microscopic organization

2) Systems for extracting, transforming, and using energy from the environment

3) Mechanisms for sensing and responding to alterations in their surroundings

4) A capacity for precise self-replication and self-assembly

5) A capacity to change over time by gradual evolution

2

plasma membrane

defines the periphery of the cell, composed of a lipid bilayer

3

metabolites

small organic molecules in the cytosol

4

Name some components of the cytoplasm

cytosol, metabolites, intermediates of biosynthetic and biodegrative pathways, ions, RNA, coenzymes, etc.

5

proteasomes

degrade proteins no longer needed by the cell

6

genome

complete set of genes

7

mycoplasmas

smallest microorganism known today

8

What are the three domains of life?

Eukarya, Archaea, Bacteria

9

obligate anaerobes

anaerobes that die in the presence of oxygen

10

facultative anaerobes

anaerobes that can live with or without oxygen

11

What do aerobes transfer electrons to to form energy?

oxygen

12

What do anaerobes transfer electrons to in order to form energy?

nitrate (forms N2), sulfate (forms H2S), or CO2 (forms CH4)

13

phototrophs

obtain energy from sunlight

14

chemotrophs

derive their energy from oxidation of a chemical fuel

15

lithotrophs

oxidize inorganic fuels (HS- to S, S to SO4-, NO2- to NO3-, Fe2+ to Fe3+)

16

organotrophs

oxidize organic compounds

17

autotrophs

obtain all needed carbon from CO2

18

heterotrophs

must obtain carbon from organic nutrients

19

peptidoglycan

rigid polymer that gives bacteria their rigidity

20

pseudopeptidoglycan

rigid polymer that gives archaea their rigidity

21

pili

provide points of adhesion to the surface of other cells

22

flagella

propels cell through its environment

23

cell envelope

consists of plasma membrane, peptidoglycan layer, and capsule

24

plasmid

small circular piece of DNA in the cytosol

25

differential centrifugation

the sample is centrifuged at a low speed to collect larger cells/cell components and the speed continues to increase each time to get a pellet of a different material

26

isopycnic centrigugation

the solvent is in different densities (usually with sucrose) and as the sample is centrifuged particles line up at their specific density where each layer can be collected

27

secondary metabolites

small molecules whose roles play specifically to plant life (only found in plants-these include scent producing molecules and things such as nicotine, morphine, and caffeine

28

What weight does a molecule need to be to be considered a macromolecule?

~5,000

29

oligomers

short polymers

30

What is the largest component of a cell next to water?

proteins

31

proteome

the sum of all the proteins working in a cell

32

What are the three major functions of polysaccharides?

1)energy rich fuel stores
2)rigid structural components of cell walls
3)extracellular recognition elements that bind to proteins on other cells

33

oligosaccharides

shorter polymers of sugars

34

What is the main function of oligosaccharides

attach to proteins or lipids on the cell's surface and act as specific cellular signals

35

What are the functions of lipids?

1) structural components of membranes
2) energy rich fuel stores
3) pigments
4) intracellular signals

36

What are the informational macromolecules

proteins and nucleic acids (named for their large subunit sequences)+ some oligosaccharides

37

stereoisomers

molecules with the same chemical bonds, but different configuration (arrangement)

38

stereospecific

cell functions only work with certain steroisomers- not all of them