Molecule

Definition

noun, plural: molecules

A tiny or a very small piece (of something).

(biology or biochemistry) An extremely small particle or substance, especially at cellular or structural level, as a biomolecule.

(physics and chemistry) The smallest unit of an element or compound, made up of two or more atoms held together by strong chemical bond.


Supplement

In physics and chemistry, a molecule is an electrically neutral, group of atoms that can exist alone in free state while its characteristic properties are retained. The atoms comprising the molecule may be of the same kind (as in oxygen molecule made up of two oxygen atoms) or of different kinds (such as water molecule made up of oxygen and hydrogen).

In biology, particularly in biochemistry, a molecule is used less strictly that it can also refer to any minute particle such as charged organic molecules or to substances (called biomolecules) produced and occur naturally in living organisms such as proteins, carbohydrates, DNA, etc.


Word origin: French molécule, from New Latin mōlēcula, diminutive of Latin mōlēs, mass.
Related forms: molecular (adjective)

Related terms:


Please contribute to this project, if you have more information about this term feel free to edit this page



This page was last modified on 19 February 2009, at 09:54. This page has been accessed 96,831 times. 
What links here | Related changes | Permanent link