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The Elements of Life

In biology, the elements of life are the essential building blocks that make up living things. They are carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, phosphorus, and sulfur. The first four of these are the most important, as they are used to construct the molecules that are necessary to make up living cells. These elements form the basic building blocks of the major macromolecules of life, including carbohydrates, lipids, nucleic acids and proteins. Carbon is an important element for all living organisms, as it is used to construct the basic building blocks of life, such as carbohydrates, lipids, and nucleic acids. Even the cell membranes are made of proteins. Carbon is also used to construct the energy-rich molecules adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and guanosine triphosphate (GTP). Hydrogen is used to construct the molecules water and organic compounds with carbon. Hydrogen is also used to construct ATP and GTP. Nitrogen is used to construct the basic building blocks of life, such as amino acids, nucleic acids, and proteins. It is also used to construct ATP and GTP. Oxygen is used to construct the basic building blocks of life, such as carbohydrates, lipids, and nucleic acids. It is also used to construct ATP and GTP. Phosphorus is used to construct the basic building blocks of life, such as carbohydrates, lipids, and nucleic acids.

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May 26, 2021

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Video Transcript

In this video, we will discuss the different elements that make life possible. So there are going to be approximately 25 different elements of the 92 naturally occurring elements that will allow for life to occur and those air going to be essential to life. And of course, life can occur, maybe with a couple less. But for really complex life to be sustained, we need approximately 25 of those elements and four of those are going to be extremely important. And if we think about these next four elements that I'm going to tell you about, the four elements are going to make up close to 96% of living matter. Of all the living matter on earth, 96% of it will be made up just of these four elements. So now we've gone from 92 naturally occurring elements. We've gone down to 25 that are going to be essential for life and on Lee four that are going to be making up 96% of all living organisms. So let's get right to it. The four elements that are going to make up 96% of all living matter will be carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen. So what do these four elements have in common? Well, it is the fact that they are going to be essential for organic chemistry, these four elements right here and specifically carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. But along with nitrogen, specifically in proteins, these four are going to take take part in organic reactions. So let's take a look at just to put this in perspective, let's take a look at how these elements play a role in the percentage of our body weight in humans and how they put a little bit of an impact into our body composition. So oxygen will be most abundant, making up 96% of the human body weight. Um, with these four elements, it will make up 65% of all of the human body weight, so that will be 65%. Next would be carbon at 18.5%. Then we have hydrogen at 9.5% and we have nitrogen at 3.3%. And all together, these four elements are going to be making up 96% of our human body weight as well as all living matter. But then we have other elements, and these elements have a special name. They are what are called trace elements, and these trace elements are going to be required for organisms to live but Onley in small amounts. So what are some of these trace elements? Well, we'll talk about seven of them, so we'll start off with calcium. And when you think of calcium, you think of milk. And of course, we know that it's important for our bone growth. But also, calcium has a lot of other roles. It's going to be involved in nerve impulses, and it will be basically be a kind of neuro transmitter in that it will be released from the end of the neuron that is firing in order to achieve certain things. And it's important for muscle contraction, and it's important for our blood level. So calcium is going to be really important in a lot of things that allow for us to live. Then we also have phosphorus and phosphorus is going to be important for plant growth, but also in humans as well. It has an essential role. Potassium is going to be really important. Then sulfur and We know that sulfur is going to be important as well, due to the fact that they're going to be these sulfur based compounds that are released by bacteria and that's gonna be your rotten egg smell. But these sulfur based compounds are going to be byproducts of bacterial metabolism, so those they're going to be really important. And then we have sodium and just like with sodium, just like with calcium sodium is going to play a really important role in our neuron, as well as maintaining proper osmotic pressure within our vessels and just a whole different range off mechanisms that takes apart and along with sodium. We have chlorine, which is combined, and a C l would be table salt. So chlorine is going to being negatively charged ion when its dissolved in either water or our blood. And it will play a very important role in a lot of these processes that require ion exchange. And then finally we have magnesium, which is also going to be an essential trace element and then even smaller amounts. So together these seven elements are going to make up approximately 4% of our human body weight. But it's just gonna be a little bit less because there are going to be the other elements that will make up less than 0.1%. And those will include boron, chromium, cobalt, copper flooring, iodine, Iron man, Janie's belived in them selenium, silicon, tin and vanadium as well as zinc. So there's a ton of these other elements. And remember, this is only 25 of the whole 92 that are naturally occurring. But we've narrowed it down to Onley 11 elements that are going to be crucial for sustaining life. And here they are. We've got the four carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen, as well as the seven that air trace elements that will make up only 4% of our human body weight. However, even if we have these trace elements that we only need this limited quantity. If we have a deficiency in these trace elements, problems could start to occur. So we talk a lot about human biology here. But if we think about deficiencies for plants, a nitrogen deficiency could be deadly because remember will learn that nitrogen is going to be essential for plant growth, but with a nitrogen deficiency of the soil. We're not going to see that kind of growth anymore. So these plants will have a stunted growth due to the fact that they are living in nitrogen deficient soil and then in humans if you have an iodine deficiency. And, of course, the iodine that we mentioned is actually going to be an even the smaller trace element where it only needs to deep in less than 0.1% off our human body weight and even a deficiency there could lead to problems in that we could develop a glider in our thyroid wouldn't work properly. So it's really important that the 25 of the 92 naturally occurring elements are there in proper quantities in order to sustain life.