Describe the basic structure of a hydrocarbon and explain why these molecules are hydrophobic?

Hydrocarbons = Molecules containing only carbon and hydrogen

- Are major components of fossil fuels produced from the organic remains of organisms

living millions of years ago, though they are not prevalent in living organisms.

- Have a diversity of carbon skeletons which produce molecules of various lengths and


- As in hydrocarbons, a carbon skeleton is the framework for the large diverse organic

molecules found in living organisms. Also, some biologically important molecules may have

regions consisting of hydrocarbon chains (e.g. fats).

- Hydrocarbon chains are hydrophobic because the C-C and C-H bonds are nonpolar.