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Biochemistry Organic Chemistry

A Brief Guide to the Twenty Common Amino Acids

The proteins that make up living organisms are huge molecules, but they’re composed of tinier building blocks, known as amino acids. There are over 500 amino acids found in nature, yet, of these, the human genetic code only directly codes for 20. Every protein in your body is made up of some linked combination of these amino […]

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Biochemistry Colourful Chemistry

The Chemicals Behind the Colours of Autumn Leaves

With autumn looming on the horizon, the leaves on some trees have already begun the transition towards the vibrant hues of autumn. Whilst this change may outwardly seem like a simple one, the many vivid colours are a result of a range of chemical compounds, a selection of which are detailed here.

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Biochemistry

The Chemical Compositions of Insect Venoms

Insect venoms are complicated. Really complicated. You could be forgiven for thinking that it must be a relatively simple company of chemicals that makes up the painful sensation of a bee or wasp sting, but in fact a hugely complex mixture of all sorts of compounds – proteins, peptides, enzymes, and other smaller molecules – go […]

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Biochemistry

The Chemistry of Insect Repellents

With summer approaching, so too approaches the time to stock up on repellents for the seasonal onslaught of insects hungry for human blood. There are a number of different chemicals that are responsible for the repellent effects of the various sprays or creams available – and chemistry can also offer possible explanations for why some […]

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Biochemistry

The Chemistry of Body Odours – Sweat, Halitosis, Flatulence & Cheesy Feet

Today’s graphic looks at the chemical compounds behind a variety of body odours – all of which we all experience at one point or another. Each is a cocktail of many different chemicals, but there are a select few that are major contributors to the distinctive aroma of each – here’s a look at some […]

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Biochemistry

Chemical Structures of Neurotransmitters

A bit of a chemistry/biology tie in today with a series of posters looking at the chemical structures of some of the main neurotransmitters in the brain. I’ve also included a little information on the main effects and roles of each underneath the structures – however, I’d hasten to add that, since this is definitely […]