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Both fatty acid and polyethylene are made (mostly) of carbons with hydrogens with a very similar configuration, yet, their properties are very different. What am I missing?

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    $\begingroup$ Not that similar structure and not that different properties. $\endgroup$ – Mithoron Jun 9 '17 at 22:26
  • $\begingroup$ Would you care to elaborate? $\endgroup$ – Kobi T Jun 9 '17 at 22:27
  • $\begingroup$ Well, you should elaborate what you consider different. $\endgroup$ – Mithoron Jun 9 '17 at 22:33
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    $\begingroup$ Well, there are lots of solid ones and "abundance in nature" isn't exactly property. Short answer may be that fatty acids have chains short enough that presence of COOH group is still very important. $\endgroup$ – Mithoron Jun 9 '17 at 22:45
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    $\begingroup$ @KobiT try this: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fatty_acid_metabolism $\endgroup$ – Felipe S. S. Schneider Jun 9 '17 at 23:01

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