Nitrogen is a component in chlorophyll, which is essential for plants to perform photosynthesis. Nitrogen is also required to make amino acids, which are building blocks of proteins that are essential for cellular function.Know More
Nitrogen makes up approximately 78 percent of the volume of the atmosphere. Atmospheric nitrogen does not freely combine with other elements, meaning living things cannot use it for cellular processes. Nitrogen fixing bacteria take nitrogen from the air and convert it to a type that living things can use. Plants absorb this fixed nitrogen from the soil. They then pass it on to animals when animals eat the plants.
Some plants have developed a symbiotic relationship with nitrogen fixing bacteria. These plants allow the bacteria to live in nodules on their roots, keeping a supply of usable nitrogen close at hand. Legumes are one example of a type of plant that uses this process.
To complete the nitrogen cycle, fixed nitrogen must be converted back into atmospheric nitrogen. Denitrifying bacteria conduct this process. Should too much fixed nitrogen remain in the soil, an imbalance in plant life can occur. Human interaction with the nitrogen cycle can increase undesirable effects, altering food chains and resulting in loss of biodiversity.Learn more about Biology
Viruses are generally not regarded as living organisms as they lack the cellular machinery required to survive on their own. This distinction is somewhat tenuous as viruses carry their own unique genetic material and are capable of evolving, but the commonly accepted definition of "life" requires the presence of a metabolism.Full Answer >
Living things need air, food and water because they are essential to the chemical processes that provide organisms with energy and keep them alive. These processes are collectively known as metabolism. The nutrients found in food, the oxygen found in air and the solvent property of water are indispensable components of metabolism.Full Answer >
Living things need nitrogen to produce amino acids that allow the organism to live and grow. These amino acids are used to make proteins that build tissues and organs and regulate cellular function.Full Answer >
Nitrogen is a diatomic element. There are six other diatomic elements: hydrogen, oxygen, fluorine, chlorine, iodine and bromine. Diatomic molecules only form when two atoms of the same element are bonded together with no other element.Full Answer >