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Difference Between Biology and Biochemistry

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In science, there are many disciplines that often seem to have similar concepts. However, there is a difference between biology and biochemistry as a subject. Biology is the core subject that studies living organisms, while biochemistry is a sub-branch of biology that deals with chemical and physiochemical processes underlying the life of an organism. In simple words, biology studies the life of living organisms in general. The field is really vast where the subject explains micro and macro organisms, body functions, behaviour, and the interaction related between them and the environment. 

Biochemistry is a different branch that deals with the chemistry of life forms and viruses. This includes the metabolic pathways, biomolecules, interaction between the molecules, behaviour of the molecules, and complex molecules that create structures. 

What is Biology?

Biology is mainly related to the study of life. It deals with the living organism, their origins, physiology, anatomy, morphology, behaviour, and distribution. The interesting aspect of this subject is that it caters to various branches and sub-disciplines. Some of these branches are also interrelated to other disciplines of science. 

What is Biochemistry?

Biochemistry is a field that combines both biology and chemistry. It gets deeper into the chemical processes that take place in the living organisms. It focuses on the chemical reaction on the molecular level that can affect metabolism, growth, heredity, and reproduction within the organisms. 

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What is the Difference Between Biology and Biochemistry?

To know what is the difference between biology and biochemistry, we have to study certain facts.  

Course of Study 

Biology is a branch of natural science, which studies the life processes and structure of living organisms. Modern biology is a vast field comprising many specialized disciplines that focuses on the living organism, its structure, function, growth, evolution, and other attributes. The main difference between biochemistry and biology is that biochemistry is a sub-disciplinary subject. It mainly focuses on the cellular components of an organism which includes biomolecules like lipids, carbohydrates, proteins, and nucleic acids. 

Career Choice 

In terms of career, there is a huge difference between biology and biochemistry. Biology is the core subject that can be further subdivided into many other branches like botany, zoology, physiology, biochemistry, biotechnology, anthropology, biophysics, and many more. This division helps students to pick between the array of career options available to them. However, one has to make progress in one’s career from their college life. In biochemistry, a biochemist has to understand how health and disease are related. They need to contribute towards the health care revolution through their innovative research work. 


Another difference between biochemistry and biology is the technique involved. Biology is a vast field and the mother of several other branches, so techniques are mainly specified for the particular branches of study. The techniques involved in biochemistry include homogenisation, enzyme assay, protein purification, chromatography, etc.

Nature of Study

The difference between biology and biochemistry also exists in the nature of the study. Biology is a completely independent discipline that only deals with the life of living organisms. Biochemistry, on the contrary, is a subdivision of both biology and chemistry. So, it deals with the chemistry of life.


Similarities Between Biochemistry and Biology

We know what is the difference between biochemistry and biology. However, there are certain similarities discovered between the two disciplines.

  • Biology is the core subject and biochemistry is the branch or sub-division of the same. 

  • Research in both subjects can help to identify the life functions of the living organism. 

Both these subjects have some common topics to cover in its curriculum like ecology, genetics, cell biology, organic chemistry, etc. Some of the departments have even included subjects like molecular biology, microbiology, physics, and chemistry. In the work field also, there are related job roles. As there are many familiar concepts, many professionals work and share their responsibilities and split the research work. Students of both disciplines can get a job in departments like pharmaceutical companies, biotechnology companies, hospitals, etc. 

Did You Know?

The process of metabolism that takes place in our body is a branch of biochemistry. It is a biochemical reaction occurring within the body that sustains the living condition of the cell in an organism. The metabolic reactions in our body not only maintains the body structure but also promotes activities like growth and reproduction. The chemical reactions take place because of the digestion and transportation of substances from cell to cell. This results in the metabolic activities that allow the organism to respond to the surrounding environment. 

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FAQs on Difference Between Biology and Biochemistry

Q1. What is the History of Biology?

Answer: The study of plants and animals existed even before the term biology was adopted by science. The phenomenon of natural history is explained by the living organisms like plants, animals, fungi, and other beings existing in the natural environment. Even there were other terms associated with the similar pattern of studies like natural theology and natural philosophy. These mainly stressed the observational part rather than the experimental field of study. Later on, in 1766 it was the works of Michael Christoph Hanow through which the term biology was taken into modern science. Biology started as a natural history marking the key difference between biology and biochemistry. Biochemistry evolved as a branch of science to know the chemical structure of a living organism.

Q2. What are the Various Branches of Biochemistry?

Answer: To know, what is the difference between biochemistry and biology we have to get deeper into the branch of biochemistry. It has 4 major branches such as cell biology, molecular biology, metabolism, and genetics. In biochemistry, cell biology focuses on the eukaryotic organism instead of a prokaryotic organism. It studies the cell and its signalling pathways within the body. Then comes molecular biology, the root of biochemistry which defines the interactions between DNA, RNA, proteins, and their synthesis. Metabolism is another crucial topic that deals with the transformation when food gets converted into energy in the human body. Finally, comes the genetics that studies the genes and their heredity characteristics in the organisms.