The Role of Chemistry in History

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May 6th, 2008 · Comments Off on References

Introduction |Keratin | Why Wool?

| A Sheep Market | Wool War I |References



Bradbury, J.H. (1976). “The morphology and chemical structure of wool.Pure and applied chemistry.

Chimie pure et appliquee´. Volume 46, p. 247-253.

The Chemical and Physical Structure of Merino Wool. Retrieved March 28, 2008, from Australia‘s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation Web site:

Creighton, T. E. (Ed.). (1989). Protein structure: A practical approach. Oxford, England: Oxford University Press.

Fowler, Kenneth (Ed.). (1971). The Hundred Years War. New York, NY: Macmillan Press.

Howarth, David (1981). 1066: The year of the conquest. New York, NY: Penguin Group.

Jones, John (1992). Amino Acid and Peptide Synthesis. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Kreplak, L., Doucet, J., Dumas, P, & Briki F. (2004). New Aspects of the {alpha}-Helix to ß-Sheet Transition in Stretched Hard {alpha}-Keratin Fibers. The Biophysical Journal. Vol. 81, p. 640-647.

McKisack, May (1959). The Oxford history of England: The fourteenth century, 1307-1399. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Richards, Gertrude (Ed.). (1932). Florentine Merchants in the Age of the Medici. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Power, Eileen (1941). The wool trade in English medieval history. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Seward, Desmond (1999). The Hundred Years War: The English in France 1337-1453. New York, NY: Penguin Group.

Thermal Conductivity. Retrieved May 1, 2008, from Georgia State University Web site:


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Categories: Keratin · Uncategorized


May 6th, 2008 · Comments Off on Introduction

Introduction | Keratin | Why Wool? | A Sheep Market | Wool War I |References


Keratin and the Role of Wool in Medieval Europe


When one thinks of triangular trade, the concept that comes most readily to mind is the African slave trade. The African slave trade consisted of trade between manufacturing countries of Northern Europe, the slave traders of the West African coast and the European colonies in the Americas. This triangular system of trade began in Europe where manufactured goods were produced for sale in West Africa. Slaves were then transported from Africa to the colonies in America, where they labored on plantations, producing raw materials needed for manufacturing products. These raw materials were then sent to Europe as the last leg of the journey. This triangular trade, however, was not the first that stimulated the English economies of Northern Europe. Centuries earlier a triangular trade involving English wool drove the English economy and led her to war. Set up by the Norman invasion of England in 1066, the wool trade drove the economies of England, France and parts of the Low Countries, developing a symbiotic relationship between the economies of the three regions. When France attempted to interfere with the balance of power, England responded with the declaration of war that would last 116 years, the conflict known as the Hundred Years War.


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April 29th, 2008 · Comments Off on Discovery

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About the Site

April 23rd, 2008 · Comments Off on About the Site

“Most of us never give a thought to the history or nature of spices or rubber or nicotine or penicillin or a score of other things – chemicals – that have changed the world…” -Oliver Sacks

clip_image001.jpg“The idea that momentous events may depend on something as small as a molecule – a group of two or more atoms held together in a definite arrangement – offers a novel approach to understanding the growth of human civilization. A change as small as the position of a bond – the link between atoms in a molecule – can lead to enormous differences in properties of a substance and in turn can influence the course of history.”

-from “Napoleon’s Buttons”

Professor Samet’s course, titled Chemistry 111: Role of Chemistry in History, is designed for non-science majors. The focal point of the course is a wonderful book titled “Napoleon’s Buttons: How 17 Molecules Changed History (Penny Le Couteur and Jay Burreson; Penguin Putnam Inc., New York, 2003).”

The goal of the course is to compile our own book, with each student contributing a chapter that focuses on a specific molecule. This website, created by the Spring 2008 class, serves as our molecule museum, and we welcome you to visit!

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Introduction to Prozac

April 22nd, 2008 · 34 Comments


ntroduction to Prozac | Discovery of Prozac | Structure and How it Works | How Prozac Affected History | How History Affected Prozac

Prozac is an anti-depressant that is classified as an SSRI. An SSRI is a Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor. Prozac’s chemical name is Fluoxetine Hydrochloride and is usually used to treat depression. The symptom of depression that Prozac aides in curing is the “blue mood” feeling that is universally felt in depressed patients. While it is most frequently used as an anti-depressant, Prozac is also used to treat obsessive compulsive disorder, anxiety, panic disorder and most eating disorders.

It is important to understand a bit about depression itself in order to understand why Prozac is such an important drug that has had such a great influence on our society. Depression affects its victims physically, psychologically and emotionally. The physical effects of depression include changes in sleep patterns, psychomotor retardation, weight loss, a decreased interest in sex and a general deceleration of normal processes. The main psychological effect of depression is a general loss of interest and concentration, which makes the daily life of a depressed person much more difficult. It becomes much more difficult to complete daily tasks because of this loss of interest and because of the emotional effect, which is sadness. When all the symptoms of depression are combined, it is easy to see why it is such a debilitating disease. Depression not only affects mood, but also almost every facet of life.





Barondes, S. H., (1994). Thinking About Prozac. Science, New Series, 263, 1102-1103.

Bellis, M., (2004). Prozac. Retrieved April 20, 2008. from


Bower, B., (1994). Antidepressants May Alter Personality. Science News, 145, 359.

Bower, B., (2006). Prescription for Controversy. Science News, 169, 168-169+172.

Blum, L. M., Stracuzzi, N. F., (2004). Gender in the Prozac Nation: Popular Discourse and

      Productive Feminity. Gender and Society. 18, 269-286.

Cheever, A., (2000). Prozac Americans: Depression, Identity, and Selfhood. Twentieth Century

       Literature, 46, 346-368.

Crary, W. G.,  & Crary, G. C. (1973). Depression. The American Journal of Nursing, 73, 472-475.

Degrazia, D., (2000). Prozac, Enhancement, and Self-Creation. The Hastings Center Report, 30,


Elliott, C., (2000). Pursued by Happiness and Beaten Senseless Prozac and the American Dream.

        The Hastings Center Report, 30, 7-12.

Healy, D., (2000). Good Science or Good Business?  The Hastings Center Report, 30, 19-22.

Lemmens, T., (2004). Piercing the Veil of Corporate Secrecy about Clinical Trials. The Hastings

        Center Report, 34, 14-18.

McLeod, J.D., Pescosolido, B. A., Takeuchi, D. T., & White, T. F., (2004), Public Attitudes toward

        the Use of Psychiatric Medications for Children. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 45,


Ni, Y. G., & Miledi, R., (1997) Blockage of 5HT2C Serotonin Receptors by Fluoxetine (Prozac)

       Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 94, 2036



Travis, J., (1999). By a Nose, Worms Reveal New Prozac Targets. Science News, 156, 196


Vogel, G., (2000). New Brain Cells Prompt New Theory of Depression. Science, New Series, 290,



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Structure of Prozac

April 22nd, 2008 · Comments Off on Structure of Prozac

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Tutorial Files

March 21st, 2008 · Comments Off on Tutorial Files

Building Link and adding Jmol images tutorial

Original Tutorial

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Prozac Jmol

February 28th, 2008 · Comments Off on Prozac Jmol

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