The importance of water for life

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In summary, water is essential for life due to its properties as a solvent, heat moderator, and suspender of solids. This is important for organisms to manage heat within their structures and expel waste through processes like exocytosis and endocytosis. Water's ability to suspend solids, including hydrophobic substances, allows for the transportation of waste and nutrients. This is made possible by the presence of lipoproteins and the activity of the Golgi apparatus.
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Hi PF,
I'm teaching a college level introductory course about planet Earth and we are briefly discussing the importance of water for life. This is not covered in our textbook but I thought it was important to cover.

I found some good resources:

and I also found this in an online class about Oceanography:
"All life on Earth requires liquid water because water is a fantastic solvent; in fact, it is often called the universal solvent.

In addition, water has a phenomenal property of retaining heat and moderating temperature, so it is important for organisms to manage the heat within their structures.
Water also can suspend solids, so it can suspend wastes and nutrients and allow you to expel them from your cellular structure."

Can someone explain further what that last statement is about? Are wastes and nutrients necessarily solids? Is this a reference to the undissolved things that water can transport? (Hydrophobic substances vs. Hydrophilic?)

Thanks for your help!
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I assume is referring to exocytosis - the process of moving waste out of a vacuole through the cell membrane and out into the surrounding medium. Molecules that do not pass through cells easily are sometimes accompanied by lipoproteins, which expedite things. Golgi bodies are active in secretion as well.

Wastes are not always solids.

You probably have shown students Brownian motion, which is a kind of "suspension" -- if that is what you are asking.

exocytosis and endocytosis --
Golgi apparatus --
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Thank you jim mcnamara! Is there are particular property of water that makes it special to be able to contribute to exocytosis/endocytosis?

What is the role of water in sustaining life on Earth?

Water is essential for all living organisms on Earth. It makes up a large percentage of our bodies and is involved in many important biological processes. Water acts as a solvent, allowing nutrients and other molecules to be transported throughout the body. It also helps regulate body temperature, lubricate joints, and remove waste products.

How does water impact the environment?

Water plays a crucial role in maintaining a healthy environment. It is essential for the growth of plants, which provide oxygen and food for other organisms. Water also helps to regulate the Earth's climate by absorbing and releasing heat, and it is a key component of the water cycle, which is responsible for distributing water across the planet.

Why is access to clean water important for human health?

Clean water is essential for human health. It is used for drinking, cooking, and sanitation, and contaminated water can lead to the spread of diseases such as cholera and dysentery. Access to clean water also promotes good hygiene practices, reducing the risk of illnesses and infections.

How does water scarcity impact global communities?

Water scarcity is a major issue in many parts of the world. It can lead to food and water shortages, causing malnutrition and famine. It also affects economic development as it limits the ability to grow crops and produce goods. In addition, water scarcity can lead to conflicts over access to water sources.

What can individuals do to conserve water?

There are many ways that individuals can help conserve water. Simple actions such as fixing leaky faucets, taking shorter showers, and turning off the tap while brushing teeth can make a big difference. Conserving water also means using it wisely and not wasting it. This can include using drought-resistant plants in landscaping and using water-efficient appliances and fixtures.

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