Trace Elements

The most frequently occurring chemical elements in living things are carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen (C, H, O, N)

Trace elements (or mineral nutrients) are the other chemical elements required by living things

trace elements

Biologically significant trace elements include:

Calcium (Ca) – Important for neurotransmitter release from synapses

Iron (Fe) – Found in haemoglobin and needed for oxygen transport

Sodium (Na) – Involved in the generation of nerve impulses in neurone

Phosphorus (P) – Component of nucleic acids and cell membranes

Sulphur (S) – Found in some amino acids, allows disulphide bonds to form

Mnemonic:  Cafe Naps

Summary of Biologically Important Trace Elements

mineral nutrients