Monday, April 1, 2013

Much Ado about Caffeine.

Wow. I just got my first glance at the first day of the A to Z challenge. There is a lot of diversity out there it seems. So it's time for me to post my A post for the month.
A is for Adenine, a nucleobase that pairs with Thymine. That's right, my first post and it's about chemicals. But wait, this is important! C5H5N5 is it's name, it's a nucleotide that makes our DNA.That is it pretty important in itself, because it makes us exist. It's the quad-decimal code that makes us, us, as apposed to a tree or a duck.
Doing some quick research on the subject though, leads to other things that the chemical is part of. When adenine forms a bond with a ribose sugar molecule, it forms Adenosine. It is also a part of it's own important processes, like energy transfer as adenosine triphosphate (ATP) or adenosine diphosphate (ATP). This post need to be short, though, so what I want to talk about is the use of adenosine to promote sleep and caffenine keeping you awake.
Did you know that reading blog posts about adenosine can put you to sleep? It's true! It's mostly a bunch of words you don't understand, written in uninteresting ways. Besides that though, adenosine (abbreviated as Ado[1]) has been heavily linked to sleeping in ways other articles. A short summary of it is that for every hour that you stay awake, adenosine levels in the brain increase, and attach to the receptors in the brain. This causes that drowsy feeling. Caffeine chemicals look a lot like adenosine, so the consumption causes caffeine to attach to these same cell receptors. It has a reverse effect on the cells, causing them to speed up instead of slowing down. For a more in depth look into sleep and Ado, look here. For those of you that don't speak science, but want to read a little more about coffee and science, look here. And here is a link to some music.

6 comments:

  1. Mmm. Chemistry. Caffeine is frighteningly a lot like some really important biochemicals. Almost makes me want to stop consuming it. Almost.

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  2. So, wait ... coffee puts me to sleep? No .. coffee gives me an energy boost, I think, or so it feels.
    Very interesting post here. Love learning new things.
    Silvia @ Silvia Writes

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    1. Sorry, I guess I mess that one up. Adenosine puts you to sleep, caffeine wakes you up by pretending to be adenosine.

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  3. I <3 Chemistry...and caffeine...and sleep. I think my Adenosine levels are rising now :) Great post.

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  4. Ooh, that's cool stuff. Guess I learned something this morning! Pretty wide awake, but I'll grab a chocolate egg or two once I get to work, just in case. ;)

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