2711, 2018
  • The Mighty Mitochondrion & Respiration

The mighty mitochondrion and respiration

November 27th, 2018|

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We spend a lot of time on this site looking at the chemistry that goes on all around us. However, there are also chemical reactions taking place in every one of your cells. This Chemunicate graphic takes a brief look at mitochondria and the reactions that take place inside them that power our bodies.


911, 2018
  • How do pregnancy tests work_

How do pregnancy tests work?

November 9th, 2018|

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Pregnancy has been in the news over the past month, with a royal baby back in October and the usual smattering of celebrity pregnancies. The inspiration for this post, however, originated a little closer to home; let’s just say that, in around 6 months’ time, my wife and I are going to be entering a fun new world of sleep deprivation! Pregnancy brings up a whole host of science and chemistry questions, the first of which is: how do pregnancy tests work?


1610, 2018
  • C&EN – Carnivorous plant chemistry preview

The chemistry of Venus flytraps – in C&EN

October 16th, 2018|

Click to view full graphic on the C&EN site

Most plants get nutrients from the soil. But Venus flytraps prey on insects to get what they need. This month’s edition of Periodic Graphics in Chemical & Engineering News looks at how these carnivorous plants molecularly lure and trap their prey. View the full graphic on the C&EN site.


1707, 2018
  • The chemistry of spinach

The chemistry of spinach: the iron myth and ‘spinach teeth’

July 17th, 2018|

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“Spinach is a good source of iron” – a myth, but a surprisingly persistent one. The story behind the myth and the chemistry that debunks it are fascinating. Here we look at both, as well as the chemical explanation behind the ‘spinach teeth’ phenomenon.


706, 2018
  • Peonies and peonin

Peonin and the colour of peonies

June 7th, 2018|

Peonies bloom fleetingly at the end of spring and start of summer, usually only lasting around 10 days. Inspired by this tweet from Dr Jess Wade, here’s a quick look at the molecule which gives them their colour. There’s more on the pH dependence of anthocyanin colour here.


2504, 2018
  • Chemistry of tulips and tulip fingers

The chemistry of tulips and tulip fingers

April 25th, 2018|

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‘Tulip fingers’ might sound like a bizarre floral-themed version of Edward Scissorhands, but it’s actually a condition that can be caused by skin contact with tulip bulbs. It’s common amongst workers in the tulip industry, whose jobs involve sorting and packaging of tulip bulbs. This graphic takes a look at the compounds behind the condition.