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Hereditary Fructose Intolerance

20 Mar 2017

Most of us can hardly wait to finish our dinner so that we can plunge into the dessert and satisfy our craving for sweets. We threaten to withhold dessert from our children until they polish off...


20 Mar 2017

During the Civil War northern forces blocked a number of Confederate ports. One of the consequences of the blockade was a dire shortage of cinchona bark imported from South America. The bark was in...

What element derives its name from the Latin word for “flow?”

20 Mar 2017

Fluere is the Latin word for flow and provides the root for the name of the element we know as fluorine. One of the common naturally occurring sources of fluorine is the mineral calcium fluoride,...

Why does cat urine smell so bad and what can I do about it?

20 Mar 2017

Cat urine is not really different from other animals’ urine, yet many people think of cat urine as one of the hardiest smells in nature. Urine is a concentrate of metabolic waste and is comprised...

Why does lettuce sometimes turn brown?

20 Mar 2017

The chemistry that takes place when lettuce leaves become brown is the same chemistry we see when an apple is cut and turns brown, when green guacamole turns brown or when a green olive ripens and...

Why can't I use fresh pineapple to make Jell-O?

20 Mar 2017

Pineapple, kiwi and papaya all contain proteolytic enzymes, in other words enzymes capable of breaking down protein molecules. And gelatin, the substance that makes Jell-O gel, is a protein....

From Twitching Worms to Non-browning Apples

20 Mar 2017

The tiny worm’s twitch was hardly noticeable, but with that slight shudder science took a giant leap!  A leap big enough to lead to a Nobel Prize that would pave the way to apples that will not...

Hydrogen Peroxide: the body's best defence system

18 Jan 2017

Enzymes are special protein molecules that speed up chemical reactions. But why should liver contain an enzyme that helps degrade hydrogen peroxide? Because hydrogen peroxide actually forms as a...


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