Organic chemistry, often considered a separate and unique branch of science within chemistry, is based on the different bonds found in carbon-based compounds, called "organic compounds." Organic compounds are made primarily of carbon and hydrogen atoms, but often contain other elements such as oxygen, nitrogen, and sulfur.
All living things are made up of these organic compounds arranged in different ways. Proteins, fats, and carbohydrates are all different types of organic compounds. There are other organic compounds that do not seem as organic, however. Gasoline, moth balls, alcohol, and fingernail polish remover are all basic organic compounds.
It was once believed that only living plants and animals could synthesize these special compounds of which we are made. Organic compounds are involved in many special and unique chemical processes that occur within living cells (from this comes the science of biochemistry). Even after these were synthesized in laboratories, however, the name "organic chemistry" has remained. In this section, organic chemistry will be the main focus and, because of the close connection between the sciences, many of the practical applications are from within the bounds of biochemistry.
Different Types of Organic Molecules
Naming Organic Molecules
Shaping of Organic Molecules
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