110305 - BE.342/442 Thursday, November 3, 2005 Topic:...

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BE.342/442 Thursday, November 3, 2005 Topic: Polysaccharides and Oligosaccharides Administrative: Next Tuesday, Prof. Zhang will be out of town, but we’ll play a movie about Francis Crick. Please come on time, because the movie is 2 hours long. On November 15 th , Prof. Zhang will be out of time, but we’ll have a guest lecture about self- assembly. At the end of this lecture, we’ll look at Peter Seeberger’s work, featured on the cover of last week’s Science . He has synthesized sugars from scratch in his lab! We’ve spent many lectures on proteins, and last time, we discussed lipids as a biomaterial. Today, we’ll discuss another important class of materials built from sugars. Polysaccharides and oligopolysaccharides can be divided into two classes: Homopolysaccharides: cellulose (plant structures), starch (plant energy storage), chitin (exoskeletons of animals like lobsters) Heteropolysaccharides: hemicellulose, hyaluronic acid, heparan sulfate, etc. Their functions include: Storage: starch, glycogen Structural: cellulose, hemicellulose, chitin Signaling: glycoproteins, lipopolysaccharides, glycolipids Sugars arte difficult to synthesize in the lab, can be obtained from organisms, which construct them by: (1) Photosynthesis (2) Gluconeogenesis and are then chemically manipulated. Sugars serve as the building blocks of polysaccharides. Starch is a mixture of glucans than plants synthesize as their principal food reserve. It is deposited as insoluble granules composed of alpha-amylose and amylopectin. Glycogen
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110305 - BE.342/442 Thursday, November 3, 2005 Topic:...

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