BioCoach Activity

Concept 1: CHNOPS: The Six Most Abundant Elements of Life

Most biological molecules are made from covalent combinations of six important elements, whose chemical symbols are CHNOPS.

Biological molecules, or biomolecules, are built by joining atoms through covalent bonds.

Although more than 25 types of elements can be found in biomolecules, six elements are most common. These are called the CHNOPS elements; the letters stand for the chemical abbreviations of carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, phosphorus, and sulfur.

Table of CHNOPS Atoms