The biochemistry is a process of the area of life sciences and is seen by experts as a chemical science that precisely to explore all the chemical aspect possessed by different organisms living and the changes that may actually arise in cells. It is in fact the basis for understanding the biological processes that occur both beings humans and the animals and the plants .


What is biochemistry?

The biochemistry is a branch of science that seeks to understand and know the composition with living beings and the study of compounds that form and those processes that happen to keep them alive.

  • Background
  • History
  • What does biochemistry study
  • Beginning
  • Branches
  • Applications
  • Related sciences
  • Biochemical Genetics
  • Nutritional biochemistry
  • Molecular biochemistry
  • Agricultural biochemistry
  • Environmental biochemistry
  • Importance
  • Examples
  • Biochemistry books


Biochemistry finds its antecedents in other areas of science such as biology , chemistry and genetics . Its main background is vitalism , a theory that said that the substances of matter were different from those of non-living matter. This theory, however, lost value in part because of the work of Whöler , a biochemist of German origin who was able for the first time to synthesize urea in a laboratory.


Later the Buchner brothers observed that even dead cells could produce fermentation in the case of yeast, this managed to open the way to study the different reactions and biochemical processes . These situations plus the new techniques that were emerging in terms of cellular and molecular biology are also part of the antecedents of biochemistry.


Its history actually dates back to very ancient times and many consider that it was first practiced in the Indian culture by those who had a special interest in the field of medicine . This made them study the composition of the body’s tissues more. Little by little they began to understand and know chemical processes and it was possible to ferment the sugar with alcohol to turn it into yeast .

The history of biochemistry begins when Friedrich Whöler was able to publish a document in which the synthesis of urea was explained , making it possible to see that organic compounds could be manufactured artificially in a laboratory. In the 19th century , famous scientists such as Louis Pasteur and Eduard Buchner managed to better understand the behavior of the substances that make up the human body.

What does biochemistry study

Biochemistry is a science that is responsible for carrying out studies on the different types of proteins , acids , carbohydrates and lipids , elements that can be found in living beings. In addition to studying them, it is responsible for analyzing all the reactions that they may present, such as metabolism , catabolism and anabolism . The chemical composition of these elements is also analyzed by biochemistry as well as the reactions that they can form, which are fundamental for life.


The basic principles of biochemistry are:

  • The study of thermodynamics .
  • The interactions that occur at the atomic level.
  • The analysis of basic molecules and their characteristics.
  • The macrostructures


The science of biochemistry can be divided into different areas of study among which are mentioned:

  • Structural chemistry which studies all the components that make up living matter and the way in which the relationship between biology and chemical structure occurs.
  • Metabolism that studies the different chemical reactions that can occur in living matter. It analyzes all the different ways in which metabolism can take place within an organism by studying chemical and biological reactions.
  • Molecular genetics that is responsible for studying and analyzing all the biological aspects of inheritance and the way in which they can be manifested. He performs DNA and RNA studies and tries to discover the exact way in which an organism can replicate itself.

Within its branches there are also many subdivisions such as endocrinology that studies the hormones of the human body, immunology that studies the different reactions that an organism presents to the attacks of viruses, enzymology that studies enzymes such as vitamins and loa bioorganic chemistry analyzing the different types of organic compounds having carbon-hydrogen bonds.


Among the most important applications of biochemistry we mention areas such as medicine, because thanks to it, diagnoses are possible. It is used in the design and production of microorganisms to make chemicals . It allows the study of marine and aquatic environments to study these types of ecosystems. It is used to maintain blood sugar and cholesterol controls. Another important application is in the field of agriculture for the production of insecticides and fertilizers.

Related sciences

Biochemistry is a very large area that can be related to different types of sciences. In nursing and medicine , it helps to better understand the way the human body performs the different chemical processes to provide care depending on each case. In the field of agronomy and agriculture , science empowers agronomists to find methods that are effective in developing crops and even improving the body mass of the animals with which they work.

In the science of biotechnology , it helps in the production of better food and medicine. It is also related to pathology because, thanks to biochemistry, a better response of the structure and function of cells and tissues can be obtained, allowing better analysis of the human body in the different tissues, cells and fluids that compose it. In the area of pharmacology , better drugs can be obtained for different types of medical treatments.

Biochemical Genetics

The biochemical genetics studies the way they behave the molecules that make up living beings and various interactions that can occur between them. It analyzes all the processes that are related to nucleic acid , responsible for providing all the genetic material of the human body and the way in which genes can later be expressed.

It is an area whose purpose is to provide resources for the development and interpretation of analytical tests that are performed in the field of clinical chemistry for the study of hereditary metabolic diseases, hormones, molecular genetics, pharmacology and toxicology. .

Nutritional biochemistry

The main objectives of nutritional biochemistry are to understand the metabolic processes that occur in human organs and tissues, as well as the different relationships between tissues. It describes the process of the metabolism of macro and micronutrients and establishes the possible adaptations of metabolism that occur in different stages of life such as lactation , pregnancy and aging .

Molecular biochemistry

Study the different processes that can occur in living beings but from a chemical and molecular point of view . It analyzes the different types of structures , their functions and the composition of the molecules considered important in order to establish and understand the interactions that occur between cells and their reactions, such as metabolism, protein synthesis and the functioning of DNA. and RNA.

Agricultural biochemistry

In agriculture, biochemistry has the ability to develop a more sustainable and safer type of agriculture . With it you can produce and analyze organic fertilizers , pesticides , you can chlorinate the water to improve its quality and at the same time study the soils to know the absorption of nutrients , the dissolution , mineralization and the dissolution and elimination of gases.

Environmental biochemistry

Environmental biochemistry is in charge of carrying out studies on the properties of cellular components and the chemical reactions that can transform them to maintain an adequate physiological balance. It also studies the processes and biochemical aspects of metabolism and the interaction that can occur between the environment and the organisms that inhabit it.


Its importance lies in the fact that without it, a series of fundamental processes in the human body and in living beings could not be understood . It is a science that helps to understand all the chemical processes that happen in an organism and at the same time provides information on possible ways to solve them when they do not work properly.


Some examples from the field of biochemistry are as follows:

  • Study of nucleic acids .
  • Study of the processes of metabolism .
  • Analysis of the metabolic behavior of the body before a certain substance.
  • Study of hormones
  • Study of the nervous system from the chemical point of view.

Biochemistry books

Some important books in this area are:

  • David L. Nelson’s Principles of Biochemistry , Michael M. Cox.
  • Human Biochemistry : Text and Atlas by Jan Koolman.
  • Biochemistry with Clinical Applications by Thomas M. Devlin.
  • Structure and Mechanism of Alan Fersht Enzymes.

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