Questions tagged [biochemistry]

For questions regarding the chemistry of living organisms.

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5
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4answers
181 views

Are dead tissues easier to preserve for extended period of time compared to living organisms?

When I asked about food preservation for 2-3 centuries, some commenters insisted that if I have technologies to preserve living humans for that long I should have no problems preserving food (with ...
4
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2answers
87 views

Consequences of magic allowing biochemistry to happen at range

I have a mage who's trying to connect his "life force" to another person's in order to magically heal them. Mechanically, this happens by the mage allowing his patient's body's biomolecules ...
4
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0answers
123 views

A stronger replacement for calcium carbonate in super-strong scales?

So, the microstructure of abalone shells is 95% calcium carbonate, such as aragonite, tiles and 5% organic polymer that binds them together. This binding fails in a graceful manner, allowing the shell ...
3
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1answer
114 views

(Survival-Type Situation) How can I Craft a Powerful Sedative From Easy To Find/Gather Materials, Assuming No Meds in Clinics or Hospitals?

I have a character that finds himself in a decent-sized town that has already been ransacked, what can I use to craft sedatives that would be effective on both Zombies, (assuming their anatomy ...
2
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1answer
88 views

What drug could interfere with a chip hooked into your nervous system?

Say a character had a chip implanted within their brain (thank you to everyone who helped with that question) and wanted a drug to try and mess with the chip's ability to hook into their senses and ...
4
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2answers
109 views

obsidian/flint like substance of organic origin

Could a species that naturally produces an obsidian/flint like material exist ? Or to put it more accurately could an obsidian/flint like material that is purely of biological origin (and not the ...
10
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6answers
3k views

Organism that can produce water on its own (possibly from air?) not requiring a water source. Is it plausible and if how?

I have thought of a sort of desert planet that has a atmosphere pretty similar to earth and with gravity a little lower which has little to no water source and most of it is empty dry wastelands. I ...
3
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3answers
146 views

Modifying horses to be able to digest a broader variety of plant material. How?

"I defy anyone to tell me they have a pasture with zero poisonous plants," said Dr.J. "Then I reject your reality and substitute my own!" shouted Dr.[Redacted]. So, I wanted to ...
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11answers
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What could substitute coffee in a modern post-apocalyptic society?

Context is the same as in a previous question. Summing up: a rebuilt, ultra-modern city state after an apocalypse where everything's produced in underground farms, and as such, certain commodities are ...
13
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3answers
794 views

Can organic life naturally produce a lightweight substance (relatively) impermeable to a lifting gas?

Apparently the Biology stack doesn't like theoreticals. :P I'm looking into the sci-fi trope of floating plants via some sort of equivalent of a kelp's pneumatocysts, and the biggest issue to ...
6
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2answers
192 views

Different human-survivable universes

If humans had the ability to physically travel to a universe similar to our own, how different could its fundamental constants be and still allow humans and other terran life to survive there long-...
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1answer
56 views

Can phosphates be replaced?

Phosphorus is central to all life on Earth, being a critical component of DNA, cell membranes, and metabolic systems (via ADP/ATP). However, it's not really all that common, especially compared to the ...
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7answers
2k views

With as much scientific accuracy as possible, how would chemicals injected in one's body be removed?

I am currently writing the world, setting and characters for a project of mine called the ORION Project - a story set in a dystopian America in the near future of 2050, where the government has taken ...
2
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2answers
112 views

Entropy, enthalpy, and energy through rapid mitosis

So I'm pretty new to chemistry and all this, but my world involves superpowers, which of course involves immense energy to have the characters use these powers. However, I want to stay consistent with ...
2
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3answers
121 views

Could an animal evolve iridescent horns that appear metallic like chrysina resplendens' chitinous exoskeletons?

Sort of two questions here, but very related. One about whether a mammal-like animal could evolve to have a chitinous endoskeleton, I guess. Then a question of whether, if they grow horns, that ...
6
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4answers
549 views

Would Chemosynthetic plants have any reason to grow tall?

I have a planet too far away from its sun for photosynthesis to work well, so the plants use chemosynthesis. But since they don't use sunlight, would they have any reason to grow above ground? Some ...
4
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1answer
74 views

Can mercury compounds be used in chemosynthesis?

While watching Biblaridion's Alien Biosphere series, an interesting point came up: in Biblaridion's fictional world, atmospheric hydrogen sulfide is used as an energy source for chemosynthetic ...
6
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2answers
338 views

Exploring a world with chiral biochemistry: chirality detection

Space explorers have landed on an Earth like planet and, to their surprise, the place is luscious and covered in life, to the point of resembling some earthly tropical atoll. What they don't know yet ...
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2answers
133 views

What are the realistic limits of human drug enhancement? [closed]

Assuming fairly plausible technologies, what is the most fairly simple drugs could do? In The Expanse there is a focus drug used by a Martian interrogator that allows him to be better at reading ...
1
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1answer
74 views

Implementing cryptobiosis into larger animals [closed]

We live in a game, called TierZoo, the game sports incredible graphics and hundreds upon thousands of active and passive skills. One of the most powerful and coveted abilities is Cryptobiosis, ...
0
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2answers
143 views

How could medical petrification work?

So, turning people into stone. You only have to add reversibility to the mix, and it becomes the BEST paramedical tool available. But, what does petrification need to accomplish to become just that? ...
4
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3answers
126 views

How do my plants trap so much carbon?

The boom-bust cycle answer I took for my question: Sustainability of Regular Global Wildfires due to Oxygen Rich Atmosphere pends on the atmosphere being rich in oxygen but poor in CO2. I, however, ...
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4answers
135 views

Designing an alien spore that's deadly to humans with the ability to wipe out billions [closed]

I'm working on creating a post-apocalyptic world brought on by a deadly alien organism. The organism by itself is not that threatening - it's pretty much a small lump of slime with legs. However, it ...
3
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1answer
120 views

Scaling up the bombardier beetle's chemical weapon. What would change?

There are two common quirks I keep hearing about dragon anatomy and biochemistry. The first is that dragons use lifting gases to keep aloft and breathe fire, both of which are just plain dumb. First, ...
4
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3answers
127 views

Werewolves and sense of smell, what is reasonable for them to accomplish with it?

I was thinking of a story with a Werewolf as a detective, using mostly conversational skills and his sense of smell to solve crimes similar to many of the UK types of detective stories (Morse, Lewis, ...
0
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1answer
86 views

How to make a bombardier beetle's chemical weapon more potent?

So, just an idea pitch. The bombardier beetle utilizes the reaction of two chemicals to create a nearly 100 °C liquid that's sprayed in the face of its enemies. How that doesn't damage the beetle? I ...
3
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1answer
173 views

Feasibility of a bone exoskeleton

First time posting here but I would like to get some help with an issue I have. I have a planet that has 30% more gravity than earth. I have terrestrial animals with an exoskeleton, they stand at a ...
5
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3answers
342 views

A sound reason for vampires to be weak to sunlight?

So, vampires here are created from humans with the help of a stone mask. Now, they're supposed to be weak for two things: Having their brains destroyed Prolonged exposure to sunlight The first is ...
9
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3answers
799 views

Alternatives to amino acids

Amino acids, the building blocks of proteins and, therefore, one of the key components of life as we know it. There are many amino acids in nature, but they all stem from the same basic structure. ...
5
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2answers
283 views

Could spasmoneme muscles be useful for a living creature?

I got an interesting answer to one of my questions and I would like to know some additional info. A myoneme (or spasmoneme) is a contractile structure found in some eukaryotic single-celled ...
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1answer
135 views

What chemicals or modifications are need for a biological creature to be able to develop as natural/organic suicide bomb?

So in my world there’s a creature as big as a common rodent or as big as a rabbit in size. They live in packs, usually burrowed, but occasionally come to surface to get food. The alpha male is tasked ...
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2answers
106 views

How could space life deal with the cold?

I am workin on an ecosystem based on life within the rings of a planet. I will create creatures from single celled organisms, to algae/ lichen, plankton/worms and scales of predators leading to large ...
3
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2answers
159 views

Relentless Super marathon?

Humans are not the fastest mammals on the planet, but for very long distances (more than 40 kilometers) we can overtake any species living on land. Except some dogs. The best runners on ultra-long ...
4
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1answer
87 views

Atmospheric isopropyl alcohol

Could a measurable amount of isopropyl alcohol occur naturally in an otherwise reasonably earth-like atmosphere? And if so, what is the highest possible concentration that a human could survive long-...
3
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1answer
96 views

Bacteria can produce sulphuric acid with pH values of <1 Could a more complex organism use them?

Previously, I asked about the plausibility of a sulphuric acid dragon. As it turns out, the answer was right on Wikipedia, namely a. thiooxidans and the snottie Snottites are highly acidic biofilms ...
4
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2answers
179 views

Dinitrogen monoxide as a gaseous oxidizer for life

Could alien life use nitrous oxide, N2O, as its oxidizing gas, like oxygen on earth? What biochemical reactions would be needed to produce and utilise this gas? I've also heard conflicting messages, ...
7
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1answer
183 views

Biology needed for a supersonic dragon?

The dragon can achieve mach 1.5 in level flight and can achieve mach 2 in a dive. It likes to hunt its prey through use of kinetic energy like a Peregrine falcon. My theories: The dragon can ...
5
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3answers
259 views

How could genetic engineering be used to create an opposite sex clone?

Do you think it will become possible to create opposite sex clones in the future? A male clone from a woman or a female clone from a man? I think it will become possible. To create a female clone ...
2
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2answers
152 views

Is a sulfuric acid dragon possible?

So, aqua regia is a somewhat safe material for a living being to work with, but the problem is that it isn't metal enough. Somebody suggested in an answer to another question, that dragons would fare ...
1
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1answer
130 views

If a human body were to break down into simple gasses of its component elements as a means of shapeshifting how much solid matter would be left? [closed]

The setting I am working with has several individuals with shapeshifting powers. To deal with the inevitable “shapeshifters seem to violate conservation of mass while shapeshifting” issue, the rules ...
3
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3answers
159 views

What is a realistic outcome of what will happen to the body if all the flammable materials in the gut spontaneously ignite?

I am writing a story where a person suffers from a medical condition where the gut produces too much of a liquid called diphosphane. Diphosphane is pyrophoric past a certain small concentration, and ...
4
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1answer
116 views

How would a creature like this work?

This lifeform is a carbon based humanoid that uses ammonia instead of water, breathes chlorine gas, and its body uses the mineral olivine to toughen its skin. Its blood is blue; apparently an ammonia-...
9
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2answers
134 views

Could life generate twice on a planet using slightly different materials?

Extremely low possibility, but if life synthesizes from scratch after life has existed on a planet for a few million years, would the two separate lineages be able to co-exist?
4
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4answers
192 views

Internal chemistry of a melon bomb

I am a giant, intelligent, fortress-like, plant-based organism, able to forge many structures, defenses and organisms from my flesh by altering my own DNA and rapidly growing new constructs whenever ...
3
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1answer
93 views

Proofing dragons against their acidic breath weapon 2/2: Preventative measures

Previous question: Proofing dragons against their acidic breath weapon 1/2: Smart Neutralizing Agent So, I decided to find an alternative breath weapon for my dragons, that maximizes destructive ...
1
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1answer
92 views

How would chemosynthesis using ammonia(NH3) work? [closed]

On a terrestrial planet with a high amount of ammonia vapor in the atmosphere, would any organism have a strong enough incentive to develop some form of autotrophic chemosynthesis that derives energy ...
2
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1answer
65 views

Proofing dragons against their acidic breath weapon 1/2: Smart Neutralizing Agent

So, dragons here use aqua regia (an acid that dissolves even gold) as their breath weapon. This acid is made up of the dragon's stomach acid and some nitric acid, stored in a separate organ. On top ...
7
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3answers
346 views

How does the ecosystem of the Underdark/underground world work?

The Old Ones build continent-sized bunker complexes to protect themselves from the enemy, which followed through the cosmic ocean. The Hunter succeeded easily despite their efforts and their corpses ...
0
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5answers
285 views

What improvements in the human body will allow it to withstand critically low or high pressure?

My question: What is it that needs to be improved or added to the human body so that it can withstand critically (fatally) low and high (if, my genetically modified person is underwater or a very ...
9
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13answers
3k views

Substance that changes quickly from liquid/gelatinous to solid?

Question: does a liquid or gelatinous substance exist that once outside a body could solidify and be hard enough to be used once as a tool? The setting is low fantasy without magic, yet with ...

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