Making Science Stick

Making Science Stick

Breaking down AQA Science Trilogy into Digestible chunks! Message me with any scientific questions!


Factors that affect the rate of photosynthesis:
1. Carbon dioxide concentration
2. Light intensity
3. Temperature
4. Amount of chlorophyll (where photosynthesis takes place)


New topic: Bioenergetics!
In short, how cells transform energy. We will be looking at photosynthesis and respiration!

Sunlight, carbon dioxide and water are used by chloroplasts (energy is taken in by the environment) to generate energy for the plant in the form of glucose, and oxygen as a by-product. Plants use the glucose to form cellulose (building cell walls) and starch (stored energy as food source)!

Because energy is absorbed from the environment, photosynthesis is an endothermic reaction!

Swipe right to test yourself!

Will post the answers later today!!


Vaccination! Very important in preventing illness! A vaccination is an injection that contains a small quantity of the dead or inactive forms of the pathogen (just enough to stimulate your immune system but not to harm you). Once inside your body your white blood cells are stimulated to generate antibodies. We also have memory cells that remember the pathogen and antibody so if you come across the real live pathogen your body is prepared to fight off the pathogen quickly (slide right)!

The graph shows the number of white blood cells in our body against time.

For a vaccinated person the white blood cells & antibodies produced happens more quickly than an unvaccinated person!

Still unclear?! Message me with any questions related to the post.

Herd Immunity: when a large proportion of the population is vaccinated (a certain percentage/threshold is met) it protects the entire population and the of spread of the pathogen is stopped!


The human defence system consists of the first line of defence our bodies protective barriers (which we have come across) and internally our white blood cells! Our white blood cells can act in three different ways:

1. Like pac man: engulfing the foreign body (virus) - phagocytosis

2. The disease causing microorganisms have chemicals on their surface called antigens that are foreign (unknown) to our body. White blood cells produce antibodies against the antigens
Each antibody is unique to each antigen (like a lock and key: you cannot use your house key to enter your friends house)

3. Pathogens (disease causing microorganisms) can produce chemical poisons called toxins, white blood cells produce antitoxins that stop the toxins released


Facts you need to know for you exams about Bacterial diseases! Key thing to remember: Antibiotics work against bacteria not viruses! Do NOT forget to SWIPE!


For the exam you have to know some basics about types of disease so here are some facts on Viral Diseases swipe right for including and


Communicable diseases - infectious diseases that CAN be passed on from one person to another e.g. chicken pox/HIV/flu. As you can see in the image having a cold can be passed on via sneezing (droplet infection) the disease travels through the air in droplets and is passed on.

Swipe right! The causes: pathogens-disease causing microorganisms including Bacteria, viruses, protists and fungi! Bacteria make us ill by producing toxins whereas viruses use our cells to replicate and cause our cells to burst thus making us feel sick 🤒 The pathogens are spread via air, water, contact. So we can prevent the spreading of these pathogens by washing our hands (sanitising), vaccination. We can become better by taking antibiotics which work ONLY against Bacteria! Our body also has a first line of defence: 1. Our skin - it is a barrier and it scans when we cut ourselves 2. Our mucus traps pathogens and prevent them going into the body 3. Nose hairs trap pathogens! Our second line of defence kicks in when the pathogen enters our body: WHITE BLOOD CELLS (which we shall come back to!)


TRANSPIRATION: via the stomata (gaps between the guard cells) carbon dioxide is let in for photosynthesis and water is let out. This triggers water to be drawn from the cells in the xylem, the hydrogen bonding between the water molecules is so strong that a continuous transpiration stream runs from the xylem to where water is let out.

Uses of water in the plant:
1. Photosynthesis
2. Transports mineral ions
3. Cools the leaf as evaporation occurs
4. Water keeps the cells turgid (ridgid/full to maintain shape)

TRANSLOCATION: the plant produces glucose via photosynthesis and uses glucose via respiration - the plant gets sucrose (converted to glucose) from the soil - the transport of the glucose from where it is/where it is produced is called translocation. Movement of food substances.


1. Root hair cell: large surface area for contact with soil and water and minerals in the soil - thin walls to allow movement of water

2. Xylem Cell: continuous column of water running through no top and bottom walls, walls are thickened with lignin

3. Phloem: dissolved sugars and amino acids are transported, companion cells located next to the sieve tubes provide energy for transportation

How structure related to function!


We have spoken about the organisation of animals! Now let’s talk about the organisation of plants! Starting off with the leaves! The leave are made up of different plant tissues (as you can see in the diagram). Each tissue is designed (structure) to carry out its job (function) - which we have seen with animal cells how their structures enable them to be adapted to carry out their job!

Plant tissues (from top to bottom):
1. Upper epidermis - these cells secrete a waxy substance that protects the surface of the leaf

2. Palisade mesophyll - as you can see they have many chloroplasts (green circles) enabling the cells to carry out photosynthesis

3. Spongy mesophyll - these too have many chloroplasts that allow photosynthesis to be carried out, however they also have a lot of space in between them giving them a large surface area to carry out gas exchange

4. Xylem - transports water and dissolved minerals from roots up to the plant

5. Phloem - transports dissolved food from leaves to around the plant

6. Lower epidermis - has stomata (8) gaps that allow gas exchange - and has guard cells (7 - red squares) that control the substances travelling in and out

Swipe right: consolidating the relationship between structure and function


The cell cycle (how cells grow and multiply) is controlled by checkpoints (represented by the yellow sparks). Swipe Right: uncontrolled Cell growth can lead to tumours, two types: Benign and Malignant! Benign tumours: are growths contained in one area (LHS: Black arrow from the arm) usually within a membrane! They do not invade (spread to) other parts of the body! Malignant tumours are Cancers (represented by green spots all over the body) spread to different parts of the body where they form secondary tumours and invade neighbouring tissues! Cancers have lifestyle risk factors e.g. smoking (exposure to carcinogens) and genetic risk factors.


What does this graph show? When you enter and exam before jumping to the question, if you get a graph read it, think about what the graph is trying to show you! So in this case the graph is telling us the relationship between the number of ci******es smoked to the number of deaths by lung cancer in males and females, from 1900 to 2009. The increase in ci******es smoked resulted in an increase in death from lung cancer.

You can say from this information there is a correlation (relationship) between the number of ci******es smoked and the number of deaths.

A correlation doesn’t always mean one factor causes another. A causal mechanism has to be found, how one factor causes the other factor (a biological process).

Swipe right: There is a causal link between smoking tabacco and lung cancer because when you smoke you are taking in carcinogens.

For some diseases the cause is an integration of several factors!

Swipe right: obesity is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes.


Disease Vs Health

Health is a state of well-being and ill-health is caused by disease. There are many factors that affect your health including: Stress, Diet, Lifestyle.

Disease can be communicable (transferred from one person/organism to another e.g. common cold) or non-communicable (cannot be transferred e.g. heart disease)

Hope that’s clear message me for further help/ information!


Coronary Heart Disease: fatty material building up inside the coronary arteries (the arteries that supply blood to the heart). The build up reduces the flow of blood through the arteries, resulting in a lack of oxygen for the heart muscle. CHD can be treated using drugs, medical device or transplants. SWIPE RIGHT: STENTS. A procedure can be carried out where a tube is inserted through the body to the blocked coronary artery. The tube is covered with a deflated balloon and a mesh. Once the tube is in the correct place the ballon is inflated and the mesh pushes the fatty deposits to the sides of the artery walls. The balloon deflates and the mesh is left to keep the artery open.

Statins, are a drug that can also be used, their job is to reduce the bloods cholesterol levels, to slow the rate at which the fatty material is deposited.

You need to know the advantages and disadvantages of different treatments!


The components of your blood:

1. Plasma - (yellow background) the liquid that holds the cellular components of the blood, transports urea/hormones/digested food molecules

2. Red blood cells - (red circles) - transport oxygen with the help of haemoglobin

3. Platelets - (pale red circles with a Red Cross) they are involved in the process of blood clotting, hence the cross they stop you from bleeding

4. White blood cells - (white Pac-Man looking blobs) - responsible for ingesting pathogens (foreign bodies that enter your body) - or producing antibodies that fight foreign bodies

Hope that is clear - message me with any questions or doubts!


Ever wondered how your heart beat is controlled... the natural resting heart rate is controlled by a group of cells, SAN (Sino-Atrial-Node), located in the right atrium and act as a pacemaker (controls the pace of the heart).

Swipe right: the heartbeat recorded using an ECG (electrocardiogram). Electrical activity starts at the SAN (P Wave) and causes the atria to contract causing the blood to flow to the ventricles. The electrical activity travel down to the AVN (Atrio-Ventricular-Node) and down the bundle of his, the electrical activity causes the ventricles to contract (QRS complex). Then the ventricles relax represented by the T Wave.

The last image shows an artificial pacemaker, an electrical device used to correct irregularities in the heart rate.


The components of the lungs you need to know about: Trachea, Bronchi and Alveoli.

The lungs are adapted for Gas Exchange. They have several Alveoli (swipe right) with a large surface area and large capillary network. The pulmonary artery from the heart takes the deoxygenated blood to the lungs where oxygen enters the blood carbon dioxide exits and the pulmonary vein returns the oxygenated blood back to the heart.


The human circulatory system, is a double circulatory system (the blood is pumped through the heart twice = double) and is formed of the lungs and the heart (organs) and blood vessels.
Deoxygenated blood from the body (deoxygenated - no oxygen) enters the heart and then is pumped from the heart to the lungs where gas exchange occurs and oxygen is collected. The blood travels back to the heart for the second time before being pumped with high pressure to the body. Blue arrows represent deoxygenated blood (without oxygen) and red oxygenated blood (with oxygen). Further details of the vessels and the heart to come...


I hope the image is not too confusing but this is the heart. From the body, mentioned in the last post, deoxygenated blood enters the heart, the top right atrium (A), via the Vena Cava (Vein). Then the blood flows to the right ventricle (V) from here it is pumped to the lungs through the pulmonary artery (away from the heart - represented by a thicker arrow than the vein, the vena Cava).

In the lungs gas exchange occurs, oxygen enters the blood, carbon dioxide leaves the blood. The blood is then transported to the Left Atrium, via the Pulmonary vein (into the heart). From the Left Atrium the blood flows to the Right Ventricle, then is pushed with high force via the aorta (artery) to the body.

Vein - into the heart
Artery - away from the heart
Atrium - chambers top of heart (a comes before v in the alphabet)
Ventricles - chambers bottom of the heat

To prevent the blood from moving into the wrong chambers there are 4 valves in the heart that act like doors preventing the movement of blood backwards.

Any questions?! Message me!
Hope the image and description are clear!


Moving onto the second subtopic of the organisation topic - starting with the blood vessels!

From the left the arteries - there job is to take blood away from the heart - A-rtery = A-way! They need to carry blood travelling at a high speed from the pump/push of the heart! They are adapted to this job by having a thick wall!

The middle blood vessels is the Vein - the veins carry blood to the heart! veIN = INto - they have to get the blood from your legs to your heart against gravity - how do the vessels prevent the blood flowing backwards?! They have valves (doors) that open and shut to keep the blood flowing in the one correct direction!

Lastly, but still very important, the capillaries they are located all over the body and in the lungs and their job is to carry out gas exchange - in order to do this they are single celled (very thin) to allow gases to move in and out easily and quickly!

Hope that is clear - message me with any questions or further clarification!


Before we move on from digestion one last bit of information you need to know!

The stomach produces HCL (hydrochloric acid) which is great for aiding digestion and killing harmful microorganisms! The enzymes produced/working here love acidic conditions!

But the enzymes in the small intestine work best in alkaline conditions!

This is where BILE comes into digestion, bile neutralises the acid to provide alkaline conditions needed in the small intestine.

Bile is produced in the liver stored in the gall bladder!

Bile has another important job which is to emulsify (imagine putting balsamic vinegar in oil - normally the oil - fat - forms a big lump but when separated by you/bread the fat droplets split to form many little ones - so this is what is meant by emulsify) the fat to form small droplets which increases the surface area.

The large surface area of the fat droplets and the alkaline conditions help increase the rate of fat breakdown by lipase - enzyme.

So bile it pretty important in speeding up the breakdown of fat!


The goal of the digestive system is to Digest and Absorb Food.

This is done by both physical and chemical digestion:

1. Physical includes the mouth working to break up the food into smaller pieces and the stomach squeezing the food

2. Chemical includes the use of chemicals to break down the food with the help of enzymes (biological catalysts - speed up reactions) to speed up digestion to allow the absorption of nutrients - without them digestion would be very slow!

Imagine trying to get into a friends house with your house key- would it work? No! Because each key has a specific shape to each lock!

The lock and key theory is how enzymes work, we have specific enzymes shaped uniquely to breakdown specific food groups!

Slide to the right:

1. Carbohydrase - the enzyme that breaks down carbohydrates into simple sugars - amylase is a specific carbohydrase that breaks down starch

Slide again:

2. Protease - the enzyme that breaks down proteins into Amino Acids

Slide for the last time:

3. Lipase - the enzyme that breaks down lipids (fat) into fatty acids and glycerol

The products of digestion are used to build new carbohydrates-proteins-lipids

As well as what the enzymes breakdown you need to know where they are produced: ALL THREE are produced in the PANCREAS and SMALL INTESTINE - separately carbohydrase is produced in the salivary glands and protease in the stomach


A Ven Diagram to compare the three modes of transport within cells!
Subtopic 3 of Cell Biology Complete 💯


Moving on to the second topic: ORGANISATION!
To start off with how we are organised.
Cells, the basic building blocks of all living organisms. (Muscle cell)
A tissue, a group of cells with a similar structure and function. (Many muscle cells stuck together form muscle tissue)
An organ, is layers of tissue together performing a specific function. (The heart: pumps blood around the body)
Many organs (lungs, heart) are organised into organ systems, these systems all work together to form organisms, us. (Circulatory system)
From a single cell to an organism!


Have you ever put salt on a snail to kill it?! A bit morbid I know! There’s science behind how the snail dies. Thinking along the lines of diffusion what do you think could be happening?! Let’s go to the next image before we answer the question above:
Imagine you have got squash, one weaker squash (LHS) - more water less concentrated juice - and one stronger squash (RHS) - less water more concentrated juice.
Which way would the water move? From an area where there is lots of water molecules to an area where there are fewer molecules!
OSMOSIS! Pretty similar to Diffusion except in the definition we talk about water.
Osmosis - the diffusion of water from a dilute solution to a concentrated solution through a partially permeable membrane. (Let’s some things in and out not all)
Let’s go back to the snail. You have go a lot of salt outside, less salt inside the snail so the water moves out of the snail faster than it moves in resulting in its death by DEHYDRATION.
Last example: osmosis in plant cells.


Active Transport! The last type of transportation that takes place in cells.
Active, what do you need when you are being active (e.g. running) you need ENERGY! That’s exactly what active transport requires and it gets this from Respiration.
As you can see in the picture energy (symbolised by the lightening) is used to move the one molecule to the area inside the plant roots where there are many more molecules.
This happens in plants when absorbing minerals from the soil!
Active Transport is the movement of substances from a more dilute solution to a more concentrated solution (AGAINST a concentration gradient - low to high - like climbing up a hill instead of rolling down it) using energy from respiration.


Not done with Diffusion yet. What the three pictures represent are the three factors that affect the rate of diffusion (how quickly it happens). 1. What would you do if a fire started? Run!! That’s exactly what particles do, well they move faster they gain more energy therefore move faster from an area of high concentration (lots of particles) to an area of low concentration (few particles). 2. Imagine you are rolling down a hill, which blob pink or blue would hit the ground first? Blue, the hill is stepper so you travel faster. Concentration another factor that affects diffusion, if there is a bigger difference between the number of particles either side (high to low side) then the particles move faster. E.g. 100 particles on one side 50 on the other, if there were 10 on the other side there would be a bigger difference than if it were 50 particles so the particles from the 100 side would move faster.
3. Which line has more area (is longer) if both were straight? The wiggly one. Surface area the last factor that affects diffusion. The larger the surface area the more movement of particles.


Diffusion is vital to keeping us alive! Mind blowing 😮
Think about the circulatory system, so blood whizzing around your body being pumped by the heart and gas exchange happening in the lungs to provide the blood with oxygen and in the body providing your cells with oxygen.

In the lungs you have lots of oxygen (O2) and less carbon dioxide (CO2). The opposite in the blood. So you have a concentration gradient, Diffusion happens to allow the gases to be exchanged. The carbon dioxide diffuses across the thin cell membrane to the lungs to be exhaled out (“breathed out”). The oxygen diffuses to the blood to oxygenate the cells of your body.
Now you have no excuse to forget diffusion, gas moves from an area of high concentration to an area of low concentration.


1996, Dolly the first cloned mammal from an adult cell using nuclear transfer!
Therapeutic cloning:
Stage 1 (No. 2 on the diagram): The nucleus of a donor egg cell is removed
Stage 2 (No. 1 on the diagram): The nucleus of the adult cell being cloned is removed and inserted into the empty donor egg cell
Stage 3: The cell is stimulated to divide and form an embryo
Stage 4: The stem cells from the embryo are removed and cultured for therapeutic use (to be used to treat the patient whom cells have been cloned)

Is this Ethically right?
Is this Socially right?
Is this religiously right?

Why is cloning carried out in the first place? Medical Treatment as your own cells when injected into your body are not rejected

Check out


Microscopes - two types you need to know about:
1. Light microscope: first to be discovered uses light to study small structures such as cells, the microscope commonly used at school
2. Electron Microscope: uses electrons to give images of cells, as you can see from the differences in the images the resolution/ the clarity of the image is much higher
Both images show a nerve ending

Magnification = size of image/size of real object


Topic 3 of Cell Biology: Transport in Cells - Diffusion.
1. What is happening in the first photo? The worst drawing of a seesaw, a blob that is heavy which means the seesaw on blue blobs side is heavier. What needs to happen for the seesaw to be straight? Part of blue blob needs to move to pink blobs side.
2. What does the second image show? Again the worst drawing of a perfume bottle being sprayed. Which blob yellow or green would smell the perfume first? Yellow blob. What needs to happen for green blob to smell the perfume? The perfume particles need to travel across the room.
3. Third image. Finally: what is diffusion? The movement of particles from an area of high concentration (where there are lots of particles) to an area of low concentration (where there are fewer particles). What’s this got to do with biology? This is how substances move across cell membranes within our body, and for other organisms.
Why did I post the first two images? To give you real life examples of what diffusion is, except the blobs are to represent people. Try it yourself spray some perfume on one side of the room and get everyone to stick there hands up when they smell it! Take caution. Do not spray your eyes.


First time making an animation! Let me know what you think?! 🤔
Cell division is the second topic within Cell Biology. We covered Chromosomes previously, so here is Mitosis.
Your cells need to duplicate because we loose cells constantly. Taking the example of cutting ourselves, we loose skin cells.
In order to not have a gaping hole in our skin, our cells duplicate to produce identical versions of each other via the cell cycle. Mitosis is the second stage where our genetic material is split after duplication to opposite sides of the enlarged cell and our nucleus divides.
Imagine two fried eggs (yolk being the nucleus) fused together.
The last stage is cell separation, image splitting the two fused eggs to plate up! 🍳 Hope the analogy helps! If it didn’t message me and I can help clear the confusion!

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First time making an animation! Let me know what you think?! 🤔 Cell division is the second topic within Cell Biology. We...