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Biochemistry 13 GENERAL PRINCIPLES

Prepared and presented by Marc Imhotep Cray, M.D.


Basic Medical Sciences & CK Teacher

Protein

Reference resources: Organic chemistry BiochemistryWikipedia Protein-Wikipedia


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Summary

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The Amino Acids. All proteins are polymers of amino acids, which are bifunctional organic compounds that contain both an amino group and a carboxylate group. Differences in the R groups of amino acids cause differences in the properties of amino acids and proteins. Zwitterions. The presence of both amino groups and carboxyl groups in amino acids makes it possible for amino acids to exist in several ionic forms, including the form of a zwitterion. The zwitterion is a dipolar form in which the net charge on the ion is zero. Reaction of Amino Acids. Amino acids can undergo reactions characteristic of any functional group in the molecule. Two reactions of importance are the reaction of two cysteine molecules to form a di sulfide, and the reaction of amino groups and carboxylate groups of different molecules to form peptide (amide) linkages.

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Important Peptides. More than 200 peptides have been shown to be essential to the proper functioning of the human body. Hormones and enkephalins are among the peptides for which functions have been identified. Characteristics of Proteins. Proteins are large polymers of amino acids. Acidic and basic properties of proteins are determined by the acidic or basic character of the R groups of the amino acids comprising the protein. Proteins perform numerous important functions in the body. Proteins are classified structurally as fibrous or globular. They are classified on the basis of composition as simple or conjugated. The Primary Structure of Proteins. The primary structure of a protein is the sequence of amino acids in the polymeric chain. This gives all proteins an identical backbone of carbon and nitrogen atoms held together by peptide linkages. The difference in proteins is the sequence of R groups attached to the backbone.
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The Secondary Structure of Proteins. Protein chains are held in characteristic shapes called secondary structures by hydrogen bonds. Two specific structures that have been identified are the alpha-helix and the betapleated sheet. The Tertiary Structure of Proteins. A third level of complexity in protein structure results from interactions between the R groups of protein chains. These interactions include disulfide bridges, salt bridges, hydrogen bonds, and hydrophobic attractions. The Quaternary Structure of Proteins. Some functional proteins consist of two or more polypeptide chains held together by forces such as ionic attractions, disulfide bridges, hydrogen bonds, and hydrophobic forces. The arrangement of these polypeptides to form the functional protein is called the quaternary structure of the protein.

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Protein Hydrolysis and Denaturation. The peptide (amide) linkages of peptides and proteins can be hydrolyzed under appropriate conditions. This destroys the primary structure and produces smaller peptides or amino acids. The characteristic secondary, tertiary, and quaternary structures of proteins can also be disrupted by certain physical or chemical conditions such as extreme temperatures or pH values. The disruption of these structures is called denaturation, and causes the protein to become nonfunctional and, in some cases, to precipitate.
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Formative Assessment

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To create a protein, amino acids are linked via a(n) ____ bond. amide acetal ester ether carboxylic

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amide

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The protein associated with connective tissue such as tendons is: fibrogen myosin collagen keratin

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collagen

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A protein can be denatured by which of the following. acids bases heat all of the above

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all of the above

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For the example listed in Figure 2, what type of structure is shown? primary secondary tertiary quaternary

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secondary

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For the example listed in Figure 3, what type of structure is shown? primary secondary tertiary quarternary

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quarternary

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Thank you for your attention

The end

Further Study: Biochemistry and Cell Biology College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University - Biochemistry Online Indiana University - Medical Biochemistry Page MIT - Biology Hypertextbook NLM - Biochemistry NLM - Molecular Cell Biology University of Utah - NetBiochem

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