The thermic effect of death as observed on yeast is about 2 gm. calories per gram of dry substance and is therefore very small as compared with the heat produced in most of the exotherm chemical reactions. As the chemical compounds composing living matter have a very great molecular weight, the decomposition of their molecule which brings about death produces more heat than the decomposition of the molecule of some explosive substances. This explains the great instability of the principal compounds of living matter.

This content is only available as a PDF.