1A03 Lab 1 Theory and Procedures W2010

1A03 Lab 1 Theory and Procedures W2010 - Page 1 of 14...

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Page 1 of 14 EQUIPMENT USED IN LAB # 1
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Page 2 of 14 LAB 1 THEORY: BIOLOGICAL MOLECULES Objectives: Upon completion of this lab you should be able to: 1. Understand the structure and properties of amino acids, polypeptides and proteins. 2. Describe how one is able to use paper chromatography to separate and identify individual amino acids from a mixture. 3. Prepare a protein standard curve and ascertain the concentration of protein in an unknown solution. CLASSES OF ORGANIC MOLECULES Organic compounds are based upon the element carbon (valence 4) which is usually found bonded to hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen or more carbon. Compounds containing carbon and hydrogen are called hydrocarbons . These carbon to hydrogen bonds are covalent nonpolar. Adjacent carbon atoms may form single, double or triple bonds, making such compounds very stable. The arrangement of the four valence electrons in the outer orbital of the carbon atom allows a total of four single bonds to be formed. These bonds point to the corners of an imaginary tetrahedron. If the four bonds are to four different atoms or groups the carbon atom is asymmetrical – two different, non-superimposable, molecules can be made. These molecules are called enantiomers or stereoisomers. Enantiomers are mirror images of each other, like your left and right hands. Fig. 1-1: Optical isomers of alanine. These different forms are chemically identical but differ in how their aqueous solutions rotate plane polarized light. Asymmetric carbon atoms make molecules “optically active”. Biological systems are able to differentiate the optically different forms of carbon molecules (stereoisomers or enantiomers) because their shapes are different and their functional groups are in different places. Biochemical processes in living organisms require enzyme catalysts which function on the basis of a very precise “fit” between enzyme and reactant molecules. The same is true for signal molecules and receptors in and on the surface of cells. This “fit” is disrupted by the wrong stereoisomer and it will not be recognized by the enzyme or receptor. There are FOUR main classes of organic molecules:
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Page 3 of 14 1. Carbohydrates are compounds composed of carbon hydrogen and oxygen, usually characterized as (CH 2 O) n or H-C-OH. They constitute 3% of the organic matter in the body. The sugars making up carbohydrates form hydrogen bonds with water and are therefore soluble. 2. Lipids are compounds composed of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen but may contain such elements as phosphorus and nitrogen as well. Lipids account for about 40% of the organic matter in the body. Lipid molecules, because their atoms are linked by nonpolar covalent bonds are insoluble in water, but soluble in nonpolar solvents. 3.
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1A03 Lab 1 Theory and Procedures W2010 - Page 1 of 14...

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