Molecule Advent Day 12: Urea

“Analyse biology like poetry”

Have you heard of urea? Maybe? You have heard of urine though – it is the word they use for wee when you have to wee in a pot at the doctors – urine sample. Urine and urea are closely linked.

Urea is a waste products formed from the breakdown of protein in your body, it has a chemical formula CO(NH2)2 and it has a nice symmetrical shape as you can see in the images below:

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urea
Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urea
urea_3d_spacefill
Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urea

 

Urea is found in your urine along with excess water and ions which are released from the body as waste. This process is known as excretion of waste. Can you find out the 3 important steps in the urinary process? BBC bitesized has a helpful step by step guide for those of you who think that you can cope with a bit of GCSE biology.

Even though urea is a waste product for our body, it actually has many uses outside of the body – mostly because it contains a lot of nitrogen. Can you find out the uses of urea for agriculture? industry? medical uses? Let us know @nanosimbox #molecules&me .