Five characteristics of living things, which are comprised of one or more cells, include the ability to grow, adapt and reproduce, along with responsiveness to stimuli and metabolic processes necessary for survival. The term "living things" encompasses animals, plants and simple organisms, such as amoeba, fungi, viruses and bacteria. Scientifically, living things are categorized into animal and plant kingdoms, depending on their similarities.Continue Reading
The cell is the basic unit of living things, and its chemical processes and components have fundamental similarities in all living organisms. Cells contain genes, which determine the unique characteristics of living things. In addition, living things require energy to survive. Plants use the sun to make their food, but animals depend on food from the environment. Living things develop or grow through organized changes in shape and body functions.
Growth also involves the process of repairing damaged cells and tissues. Responsiveness to the environment allows living things to adapt to change and survive. The ability to move is limited in some living things, such as plants. Most living things also work and depend on other life forms for survival. For example most animals depend on other animals and plants for nutrients. They also compete for resources, such as food, moisture, sunlight and space. When living things die, bacteria and fungi act upon their cells and tissues, causing decay and release of nutrients to the soil for plants to absorb and utilize.Learn more about Biology
Enzymes are primarily protein and act as biological catalysts in a wide variety of vital metabolic processes. Simple enzymes are comprised of protein only and conjugated enzymes are those which are comprised of both a protein and a non-protein portion. All enzymes aid in biochemical processes through their ability to bind to their respective substrates and lower the amount of activation energy required for a metabolic reaction to occur.Full Answer >
In biology, feedback inhibition refers to the mechanisms that control certain processes and functions within cells, the body and even the environment. At its most basic, feedback inhibition means that when some sensor gets a certain amount of feedback from the environment, it turns another system on or off.Full Answer >
Living things need air, food and water because they are essential to the chemical processes that provide organisms with energy and keep them alive. These processes are collectively known as metabolism. The nutrients found in food, the oxygen found in air and the solvent property of water are indispensable components of metabolism.Full Answer >
Buffers are an important part of the biochemical processes of living things because they help keep the pH within organisms' body stable. Most biochemical reactions that are essential for life only take place in a narrow pH range. The presence of buffers ensures that the body's pH remains in this range, despite changes in the surroundings.Full Answer >