Bis2A: Origins and Essentials of Life
An Introduction to Biology
Plan of the Course
This course deals with fundamental properties of living things and basic questions that
biologists are trying to answer. While many of your previous science
Each member of the group is to turn in
their HW and vocabulary. Staple each
assignment together as a group. Each
group should have two piles of work to
turn in. The one on top will be graded.
Place all group members real names on the
The intimate relationship
between earth and life
Origin of elements, the earth and
organic molecules before life
History of life on earth
chemical landmarks and major puzzles
How could earth feed first life?
Why does redox chemistry run life?
Whats in this folder.
These essays grapple with the surprisingly difficult problem of defining Life.
Like many biological terms, the word life is in common use but the definition is
uncertain. If youre going to study biology, maybe its time to face this p
The fates and uses of electrons released by
All life is energized by REDOX chemistry - Hot electrons are released by a donor molecule
- and transferred to an acceptor molecule.
Warm Up Questions
If youre here early . . . work on theses questions.
What are the absolute minimum criteria that distinguish
living from nonliving things?
What is electronegativity and how can you tell if an atom is
electronegative (compared to what?
Using light instead of fuel
Life as an AUTOTROPH
(Dont think about oxygen quite yet)
use FUEL as their source of
electrons and carbon
Fermenters - dump their excess reducing power (two toys)
- get ATP from subs
Some basic chemistry of life
Extracting and using energy
from redox reactions
Today - look for answers to these ->
1. Where does the energy come from?
2. What makes something a good fuel?
3. Why is the match important?
4. How does life get usefu
Introduction to Biology Bis2A
Origins and Essentials of Life
The first in a series of introductory
biology courses. (Bis2A, B, C)
Bis2A Origins and essentials of Life
Bis2B Diversification of life - evolution/ecology
Bis2C Nature of biological diversity k
L IFE A ND I NFORMATION
W HAT I S I ./FE?
originaL This is an effective way o f copying a surface, b ut would not work i f the
object t o be copied resembled a living organism with a complex internal struc
ture, down to the level o f cells and molecules
Transition state energy
Inherent (chemical) and kinetic energy
Rate constant (probability of a reaction)
Rate of a reaction (actual flux or molecules/unit time)
Reaction sequence or path
Pigments of life
Excited state of photocenter
Photosystem II (cyclic) PMF and ATP
Photosystem I (non-cyclic) and NAD
Coupled Photosystem II and I
Glossary Lecture 5 (Respiration)
Three toys of life
(one so far for fermentation)
(two more for respiration)
Proximal electron acceptor
Ultimate electron acceptor
Electron transport chain
Heme and heme iron redox
neutron, proton, electron
biological elements - relative abundance
Ions electron exchanging
Ionization of water
Meteorites vs meteors
S C I E N C E S C O M PA S S
The Seven Pillars of Life
Daniel E. Koshland Jr.
hat is the definition of life? I remember a conference of the scientific elite that sought to answer that question. Is an enzyme alive? Is
a virus alive? Is a cell alive? After
1. Discuss where the majority of the dry mass of a plant comes from.
2. It is likely that photosynthesis evolved after life began and therefore the first life was independent of the sun's energy. Do you think all life currently is dependent on photosynthe