Danio rerio.JPG

Image of zebrafish By Pogrebnoj-Alexandroff from Wikimedia Commons

We tend to think of carbon monoxide (CO) only in terms of being a poisonous gas. The reason for its toxicity is due to its ability to bind really tightly to our hemoglobin molecules, which prevents oxygen from being able to bind. In mammals, CO also decrease breathing rate. As you can imagine, it is a pretty terrible gas to breath in when you are a species dependent on hemoglobin for delivery of oxygen to tissues.

A bit of additional trivia: Some processors expose meat to carbon monoxide to keep it red longer, which is controversial as they can use it to mask visual detection of spoiled meats. It works by binding to the oxygen carrying molecule myoglobin in muscles and preventing its oxidation (like it does with hemoglobin). (see story from ABC news and defense of the practice from the Meat Institute).
Concollato A, Bjorlykke GA, Kyamme BO, Sorheim O, Slinde E, Olsen RE. Chapter 51 – The effect of carbon monoxide on slaughter and processing of fish. Processing and Impact on Active Components in Food (ed: V Preedy). Pages 427-431, 2015.


  1. #1 Morghana Chavez
    January 4, 2017

    Carbon monoxide (CO) is a vapid, scentless, and dull gas that is somewhat less thick than air. It is poisonous to hemoglobic creatures (both invertebrate and vertebrate, including people) when experienced in focuses above around 35 ppm, in spite of the fact that it is additionally delivered in ordinary creature digestion system in low amounts, and is thought to have some typical natural capacities. In the environment, Dissertation Help UK it is spatially factor and fleeting, having a part in the development of ground-level ozone. Carbon monoxide comprises of one carbon molecule and one oxygen iota, associated by a triple bond that comprises of two covalent bonds and additionally one dative covalent bond. It is the easiest oxocarbon and is isoelectronic with the cyanide anion, the nitrosonium cation and sub-atomic nitrogen. In coordination buildings the carbon monoxide ligand is called carbonyl.