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April 2, 2016 | Author: | Posted in health and medicine, nutrition


Amino Acids and Proteins

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Proteins are the most abundant building blocks of cells in any living organism . They are essential part of our human body . Our tissues , genes and even the blood cells that flow within our veins and arteries are made up of mostly proteins . Each protein has its own unique structure and function . Proteins are the most complex macromolecules because they are also made of smaller molecules called amino acids

From Amino Acids to Protein

An amino acid is any molecule that [banner_entry_middle]

contains both amine and carboxyl functional groups (Wikipedia , 2007 . Amino acids form complex structures through links know as peptide bonds . These peptide bonds arrange several segments of amino acids to form more complex structures . The chain of amino acids is also known as a polypeptide (Carter , 1996 . The sequence of amino acids in any polypeptide is unique to each other . Basically a polypeptide is already a protein but some proteins are consists of several polypeptides . Proteins are formed from several polypeptide chain structures . They are classified as primary , primary (1 , secondary (2 , tertiary (3 , and quaternary (4 . Primary structures are linear sequence of amino acids in a polypeptide chain . Secondary structures are the more complex regular geometric figures of the chain . Tertiary structure results from long-range contacts within the polypeptide chain The quaternary structure is the organization of protein subunits or more complex combinations of two or more polypeptide chains

The unique biological functions of proteins depend primarily on their side chains . Side chains are classified into three categories non-polar , uncharged polar , and charged polar . Non-polar side chains generally have very low solubility in water while the uncharged polar and charged polar normally have relatively high solubility in water This property alone could mean a lot in terms of how they are utilized in the human body because water is involved in a number of processes in our body

Uses of Protein in the Body

Proteins are used in several areas of the human body and in many forms In facts protein can also be the source of energy if our body ran out of carbohydrates or fats . Since proteins are used in several ways in our human body , let us focus on some examples . One very important use of protein in the human body is in our genes . Proteins store the genetic blueprint , or basically instructions to construct our physical characteristics , in the form of helical structures of amino acids called Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA . Amino acids play central roles both as building blocks of proteins and as intermediates in metabolism (University of Arizona : Biology , 2003 . This means that proteins function as building blocks of our cells , cells that form our skin muscle and all the tissues in our human body . Proteins are also used as enzymes in our body . Enzymes are substances that basically help trigger chemical reactions in our body such as the digestion of food


Proteins are formed from several chains of amino acids . They are used… [banner_entry_footer]


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