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Chapter 3 Study Guide - Study Guide 3 UNIT I The Atoms...

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Study Guide 3 UNIT I: - The Atoms & Molecules of Ancient Earth (Basic Chemistry) - The Properties of Water; Water Chemistry - Thermodynamics and Chemical Energy - The Origin of Life’s Energy-Rich Molecules, Redox Reactions and Carbon; Functional Groups - Organic & Macromolecules; Polymerization, Chemical Evolution; Catalysis & the First Macromolecules - Lipids, Semi-Permeable Membranes and the First Cells The Origin of Life’s Energy-Rich Molecules, Redox Reactions and Carbon; Functional Groups 27728. According to Oparin and Haldane, the prebiotic atmosphere of earth probably contained mostly simple inorganic molecules like H 2 , CO 2 H 2 O, CH 4, & NH 3 , molecules known to be present on other planets. CH 4 & H 2 are rich in potential (i.e., free) energy; we use them to heat & cook with & to power rockets (& some day maybe, cars!). Simple molecules would have absorbed environmental light & electrical energy, exciting electrons & creating chemical products that had even higher free energy. Among these were free radicals (see Fig. 2.21 ) produced when radiation excites electrons from their shells. 27729. Such unstable free radicals would have interacted with other molecules to create more complex molecules even richer in chemical energy. Among these were early organic molecules , with C-C bonds (see Fig. 2.24 ). 27730. Energy rich molecules like H 2 participated in redox reactions in which they gave up electrons to (i.e. reduced) organic molecules to make sugars, lipids, etc., that we recognize as high energy ( nutrient ) molecules that can later release free energy during their oxidation in cells. In redox reactions, one molecule is reduced (gains electrons) and the other is oxidized (loses electrons).
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