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LECTURE 05 Macromolecules & Proteins

LECTURE 05 Macromolecules & Proteins - 2:010 Principles...

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2:010 Principles of Biology Lecture 5 Macromolecules & Proteins Last lecture we discussed how carbon-based, organic molecules are the basic constituents of living matter. There are 4 basic chemical structures that are of utmost importance and you should know these structures. SUGAR AMINO ACID FATTY ACID NUCLEOTIDE Three of these (all except the fatty acids) have the ability to form covalent bonds with each other leading to the formation of larger molecules (macromolecules or polymers). Next lecture we will see that the fatty acids have the ability to aggregate together without the involvement of covalent bonds in order to form membranes . These macromolecules are the major molecular components of living matter. Sugars polymerize to form polysaccharides . Some examples of polysaccharides include: Cellulose – polymers of glucose, produced by plants, the most abundant organic molecule on Earth. Function is mainly structural. 1 QuickTime and a TIFF (Uncompressed) decompressor are needed to see this picture.
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Starch – a different polymer of glucose made by plants. Since glucose is the major energy source for cells this represent a way of storing energy when an excess is available. Glycogen – again a different polymer of glucose. A energy store for animals and mainly found in liver and muscle cells. Nucleotides polymerize to form polynucleotides or nucleic acids . The major examples of these are DNA and the multiple forms of RNA. These are going to be discussed in detail starting next week. Amino acids polymerize to form polypeptides or proteins , the major topic of today’s lecture. The covalent bonds that form between these monomers to synthesize the polymers do so by a chemical reaction that involves the removal of the equivalent of a water molecule. These are called dehydration reactions. Remember that for this chemical reaction to take place there must be a collision between the reactants. These collisions occur with increased frequency if the reactants are dissolved in water with hydration shells surrounding them. We can ask the question: Why do life forms use such large macromolecules? It certainly must require a lot of energy to synthesize and maintain them.
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LECTURE 05 Macromolecules & Proteins - 2:010 Principles...

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