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The Chemical Basis of

Life I
Atoms, Molecules &

Definitions you should know
Matter: anything that contains mass
and occupies space, composed of atoms
Atoms: the smallest functional units of
matter, cannot be broken down further
by ordinary chemical or physical means
Molecules: two or more atoms bonded
Element: pure substance of only one
kind of atom
Subatomic particles: found within
• Protons: positive charge, in nucleus

2.1 Atoms
Learning Objective
1. Describe the general structure of
atoms and their subatomic particles.

“the chemical properties of an atom are determined by the outermost electron shell” 3.Orbitals: the region around the nucleus of the atom where electrons are found 2.Definitions you should know 1.Dalton: also known as atomic mass unit (amu) equals 1/12 the mass of a .Electron shells or energy levels: a grouping of electrons surrounding the nucleus of an atom.Valance electrons: electrons in the outermost shell of an atom 4.

.2. Discuss the way electrons orbit the nucleus of an atom within discrete energy levels.1 Atoms Learning Objective 2.


Atomic number: number of protons in a specific element Atomic mass: number of protons plus the number of electrons .2. Relate atomic structure to the periodic table of the elements.1 Atoms Learning Objectives 3.


and how certain isotopes have importance in human medicine. Explain how a single element may exist in more than one form. called isotopes.2.1 Atoms Learning Objective 5. Isotope: element with the same number of protons but different number of neutrons • Similar chemical properties can have different physical properties 12 C and 14C Half-life: time it takes for 50% of the isotope to decay Radioisotopes: lose energy by emitting .

.1 Atoms Learning Objective 6.2. List the elements that make up most of the mass of all living organisms.

.2 Chemical bonds and molecules Learning Objective 1. 3.2. Explain the concept of electronegativity and how it contributes to the formation of polar and nonpolar covalent bonds. Relate the concepts of a chemical reaction and chemical equilibrium. Compare and contrast the types of atomic interactions that lead to the formation of molecules. Describe how a molecule’s shape is important for its ability to interact with other molecules. 4. 2.

Definitions you should know Molecule: two or more different atoms bonded together Molecular formula: types and number of atoms in a molecule Compound: a molecule composed of two or more different elements Covalent bond: atoms share a pair of electrons Ionic bond: gain and loss of an electron between two atoms. resulting in positive and negative charges the hold the two atoms close together Hydrogen bond: A hydrogen bond forms when a hydrogen atom from one polar .

outer holds 8 electrons=octet rule .Covalent bonding: Inner shell holds 2 electrons.

• The octet rule states than many atoms are most stable when they have 8 electrons in their outermost electron shell • Exceptions are hydrogen and helium-their outermost shell can only hold 2 electrons .

H-F • Double covalent bond: sharing of 4 electrons (2 pairs) between 2 atoms. O=O Why does the O2 molecule obey the octet rule ? .• Single covalent bond: sharing of 2 electrons between atoms.


• Polar covalent bonds occur because of electronegativity • Electronegativity of an atom is a measure of its ability to attract electrons in a bond with another atom • Shared electrons are more likely to be closer to the nucleus of the atom of higher electronegativity • Water is an example of a molecule that has polar covalent bonds .

Hydrogen bonds: allow interactions between and within molecules .

Ionic Bonds: involve an attraction between positive and negative ions .

resulting from gaining or losing and electron Cation: a positively charged ion Anion: a negatively charged ion .Definitions you should know Ion: a charged atom.

Shapes of molecules: depends on the types of bonds between their atoms. pH of the solution . temperature of their environment.

Enzymes Substrates Noncovalent interactions .

damage DNA. unpaired electron in its outer shell • Formed by Exposure of cells to radiation or toxins • Harmful: causing a cell to rupture.Free Radicals are a special class of highly reactive molecules What is a free radical ? • A molecule containing an atom with a single. • Helpful: used to kill invading cells (bacteria) • Vitamines C & E are antioxidants which destroy the free radical • Free radicals can either by charged or neutral .

Chemical Reactions change elements or compounds into different compounds Chemical Reaction: when one or more substances are changed into other substances by the making or breaking of chemical bonds Catalyst: substance that speeds up the rate of a chemical reaction Chemical equilibrium: the rate of the formation of products equals the rate of the formation of reactants CH4 + 2O2 (methane) (oxygen) dioxide) (water) CO2 + 2H2O (carbon .

and how the H+ concentration is expressed as a solution’s pH. . 2. and distinguish between hydrophilic and hydrophobic substances. Describe how hydrogen bonding determines many properties of water.2. 3. 4. Discuss the properties of water that are critical for the survival of living organisms 5. Explain how water has the ability to ionize into hydroxide ions (OH–) and into hydrogen ions (H+). Explain how the molarity of a solution—the number of moles of a solute per liter of solution— is used to measure the concentration of solutes in solution. List the properties of water that make it a valuable solvent.3 Properties of Water—Learning Objectives 1.

Ie. Glucose has a molecular mass of 180 Molarity: the number of moles of a solute .Definitions you should know Solution: solute dissolved in a solvent Hydrophilic: water – loving Hydrophobic: water –hating Amphipathic: part of the molecule is polar and a second part is nonpolar Micelle: a sphere of amphipathic molecules in solution (water) Concentration: the amount of a dissolved solute per unit volume of liquid (solvent) Molecular mass: is equal to the sum of the atomic masses of all the atoms in the molecule.





Water exists in three states .

2260 J of heat will be released to the . liquid .Temperature and the “state” of water Solid (ice) 0C. gas (100°C) Heat of Vaporization-the amount of heat required to convert unit mass of a liquid into the vapor without a change in temperature. 2260 J of heat must be absorbed by the water. when 1 g of steam at 100 °C condenses to give 1 g of water at 100 °C. the  heat of vaporization is 2260 J g-1. Conversely. For water at its normal boiling point of 100 °C. This means that to convert 1 g of water at 100 °C to 1 g of  steam at 100 °C.

does ice float or . (or released for freezing) For water at its normal freezing point of 0 °C. the specific heat of Fusion is 334 J g-1. when 1 g of water at 0°C freezes to give 1 g of ice  at 0°C. Conversely. Water is most dense at 4°C.Heat of Fusion-the amount of heat required to convert unit mass of a solid into the liquid without a change in temperature. 334 J of heat must be absorbed by the water. 334 J of heat will be released to the surroundings. This means that to convert 1 g of ice at 0 °C to 1 g of  water at 0 °C.

Cohesion Adhesion Surface tension Evaporation/Transporatio n Solvent Hydrolysis reaction Dehydration reaction .

pH=-log10 [H+] Buffers minimize fluctuations in the pH of fluids CO2 + H2O H2CO3 H++ HCO3 – .