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Biochemistry

Carbohydrates
Monosaccharides join together to form disaccharides in a condensation reaction. During this reaction, a molecule of
water is released and a glycosidic bond forms between the two monosaccharides.

There are three main disaccharides that are needed in the exam:
Monosaccharide 1
Glucose
Glucose
Glucose

Monosaccharide 2
Glucose
Fructose
Galactose

Disaccharide
Maltose
Sucrose
Lactose

Many monosaccharides join together to form polysaccharides, again through condensation reactions.
There are three main polysaccharides needed for the exam:
Polysaccharide
Starch
Amylose

Structure
A long, unbranched chain
of -glucose. The bond
angles give it a coiled
structure.

Function
The coiled structure makes it
very compact, so it is a good
for storage of glucose.

1,6-glycosidic links
between -glucose create
a highly branched
molecule.

The branched structure allows


enzymes to get at more
bonds, since the surface area
increases.

Glycogen

Glycogen has more 1,6glycosidic links than


amylopectin so is much
more branched.

Also a storage molecule,


especially in liver and muscle
cells.

Cellulose

A straight chain of glucose. The straight chains


enable them to lie parallel
to each other and to be
strengthened by hydrogen
bonds between adjacent
chains, forming
microfibrils.

Microfibrils give cellulose its


high tensile strength, and so it
is a structural polysaccharide.
The cell wall prevents the cell
from bursting when they swell
due to osmosis.

Amylopectin

Extra Info
In flowering plants, starch
granules are kept in
organelles called plastids.

Glycogen can be broken


down more rapidly than
starch, which is why
animals have a higher
metabolic rate.
Cellulose is completely
permeable. In wood, it is
strengthened further by
lignin.

Disaccharides and polysaccharides can be broken down into monosaccharides through a hydrolysis reaction, where a
water molecule is added to the molecule to break it apart.

Glucose is the most common monosaccharide, and has two main isomers: -glucose and -glucose.

To test a food for the presence of a carbohydrate, Benedicts test can be used. There are two forms of this test: one
for reducing sugars, and one for non-reducing sugars.

There is also a specific test for the presence of starch, called the iodine test. Simply add iodine dissolved in
potassium iodide solution to the test sample. If there is starch present, the sample changes from a brown-orange
colour to a dark, blue-black colour.

Amino Acids and Proteins


All proteins are made up amino acids. All amino acids have the same basic structure:

Two amino acids can combine to form a dipeptide via a condensation reaction, and similarly they break apart
through a hydrolysis reaction. A peptide bond forms between the two amino acids.

When many amino acids join together, a polypeptide is produced. Eventually, a protein is produced, which have four
main structures.

Primary

Secondary

This is just a long, linear sequence of amino acids.

Hydrogen bonds begin to form between the amino


acids, which leads to -helices or -pleated sheets.

Tertiary

Quaternary

The coiled or folded chain is coiled and folded further.


More hydrogen bonds form between different parts.
Di-sulphide bridges form between cysteine molecules
(due to their sulphur atom). This gives them a globular
shape.

Different polypeptides bond together to form


quaternary proteins, such as haemoglobin, insulin, and
collagen.

The shape of a protein influences its function haemoglobin is compact and soluble, so its good to transport.
Enzymes Usually spherical and soluble. They are an essential part in metabolism, and are involved in both
anabolic and catabolic reactions. Theyre globular shape gives them the active site that can attach
to the substrates.
Antibodies Made up of two short polypeptide chains and two long polypeptide chains bonded together. They
have variable regions where the amino acid sequences differ greatly.
Transport Present in the plasma membranes. They contain hydrophobic and hydrophilic amino acids, which
Proteins causes the protein to fold up and form a channel, allowing molecules and ions to travel across the
membrane.
Structural Usually consist of long polypeptide chains lying parallel to each other with cross links between
Proteins them. Examples are keratin and collagen.
The presence of a protein in a food molecule can be tested for using the biuret test.
1. Add a few drops of NaOH to the sample to make it alkaline.
2. Add some CuSO4 to the solution.
If a protein is present, the solution will turn from blue to purple.

Lipids and Phospholipids


Triglycerides are lipids made from glycerol and fatty acids. Glycerol is an alcohol containing three carbon atoms, each
linked to a hydroxyl group, propan-1,2,3-triol. Fatty acids are simply carboxylic acids.
A triglyceride is formed when each hydroxyl group combines with a fatty acid in a condensation reaction to form
three ester bonds.

A saturated fatty acid has no double bonds, which makes it easier to pack together, so they are usually solid.
Unsaturated fatty acids have double bonds, and can be cis- or trans-. Triglycerides in cis- form tend to be oils due to
the kink, which prevents them from packing closely together.

Phospholipid molecules consist of glycerol attached to two fatty acids, and a phosphate group attached to the third
carbon atom. The phosphate group is polar and hydrophilic, whereas the fatty acids are oily and hydrophobic.

An emulsion test can be used to find out if lipids are present in a food.
1. Shake the test substance with ethanol for roughly a minute.
2. Pour the solution into water.
Any lipid present will show up as a milky emulsion.