Wednesday , January 20 2021

How does a combination of urine always change the concept of life – BBC News

By the end of the 18th century, chemists began to understand that metals, rocks and living organisms with all the substances, air and water in the world are composed of the same basic components, which are called elements.

They started compiling the list of these elements, including hydrogen, oxygen, carbon and metals such as iron, copper and gold.

And they developed techniques to identify and measure the amount of elements in more complex substances "Compound"

At the beginning of the nineteenth century, they understood that every element was made from small, indivisible particles known as molecules, and that these molecules were made of different arrangements and compounds.

It was like that Modern chemistry was born, Started watching a system to explain how it is done.

But there was something that was still there Mystery for Science: Organic Objects

All the objects on earth are composed of elements.

Chemists can study and understand the compounds found in live animals – animals and plants – and have seen that it contains most of the same elements, especially carbon, oxygen, hydrogen and nitrogen.

But they did not understand the mysteries and mysteries of these things.

So, they found it It is impossible to make organic organic materials in the laboratory.

A plant inside a laboratory container
Chemists can not regenerate living organisms.

Nobody understood how Nature works, and the belief was that there was something unique in living creatures, a mysterious "life force" that gave them the special ability to synthesize chemicals.

This principle is called "Vitality"And it shows the difference between natural products and laboratory products.

But in 1828 this theory was reversed, thanks to German theorist Frederick Wohler.

Synthetic Prime

Wohlare created the first organic ingredients made from unfamiliar ingredients and thus was the first person to convert the inactive substance into a live product.

What was that miraculous product? Oddly it wasa Urea, one of the main combinations of urine.

Boys shower with urine statue.
There was nothing to do with urine in search of wohler.

It was not a deliberate creation: Vohler was not trying to recreate Peer.

The story of his invention began a few years ago, when in 1823 Young German scientist He went to Stockholm to study with the famous Swedish chemist Jones Jacob Berkeolus.

One year later, Wohler felt something interesting. He discovered that by mixing ammonia with a substance called cyanogen, it can produce oxyic acid compounds and Some white crystals that they could not recognize.

It took four years to understand these crystals were Urea.

This substance had an equal proportion of equal amounts, because salt ammonium cyanet – part of carbon and oxygen, was part of two nitrogen and four hydrogen-but wohlare saw that It does not behave with all like ammonium cyant.

After all, he concluded that his design had similar properties like urea, which was only available from live sources.


This discovery – which actually makes two organic substances, is because the oxytic acid made by it is found in some plants – it has been in scientific history. One of the most important milestones in chemistry.

Many people believe that it is the birth of organic chemistry, which today allows us to produce flavors and perfumes from medicines and fuels.

Uraa Crystal Image (CO (NH2))
He took Wahler for four years and came to the conclusion that he had white crystals made from urea.

And some scientific texts written after 1840 highlight the creation of artificial urea The Beginning of the End of Life

In 1882, it was also pointed out by statues written after the death of Wohlar, who believed in him as a man who broke the wall between the living world and an unknown world.

However, there is no evidence that German chemists themselves have given them an assurance that others have given them.

Letters written between Wohler and his teacher, Berzelius, show a great enthusiasm for the achieved landmark They do not believe in the ultimate issue of biology.

In a letter, Barclays also asked the young man not to be distracted from the rest of his work, which he considered to be more important.

Portrait of Friedrich Wohler
Even today the legend has been preserved that Wohler had defeated the vitality, but it was not so much …

Today, the theory that Wohler lived in his life has a name: it's "Wohler's Myths"And it's too broad.

BBC Peter Rumburg of Missouri, Truman State University of the U.S. said that two decades ago, the textbooks on organic chemistry were studied and 90% of them had "some versions of this myth".

However, Ramburg and other modern scholars believe that there was an important force behind the formation of organic matter Gradually and falling into the phase, And in 1828 when Wohler synthesized urea, it was also a forgotten theory.

But the certainty is that German discovery shows that chemists can reproduce natural products, many of whom want to follow imitation and rival nature.

Growth in a few decades and by the end of the 19th century chemical industries would cover our modern life.

(* This article is based on the BBC Radio 4 series "Science Stories" series "Ure and the Whohler Myth" (Urea and Wohler's beliefs).

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