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The 4 Major Organic Compounds in us!


Carbon | Carbohydrates | Proteins | Nucleic Acids | Lipids | Dehydration Synthesis and Hydrolysis | FAQs and Contact | References
FAQs and Contact

On this page you'll see answers to some questions about the four major organic compounds. To get in touch with me, you'll see my e-mail address at the very bottom of this page.

What is cholesterol?
 It is a type of lipid that is in all aminal cells. It can be produced by the body, but is mostly taken in. Since animals make cholesterol, the easiest way for cholesterol to build up in us is via meat intake.

What are the roles of lipids?
 Lipids function in membranes, as energy storage, and hormones.

What affects enzymes?
 Enzymes can be affected by the temperature and pH. Most enzymes function wwithin certain temperature levels and pHs and become denatured (term meaning useless or broken) when not used in their optimal range. For example, the hydrocholoric acid (HCL) in our stomach functions best in the very acidic environment of our stomachs.

How are proteins made in our body?
 Proteins are made by the process of translation. However, for translation to occur, transcription must take place. In transcription, the DNA is read and copied to make mRNA strands. The mRNA then goes to the ribosomes where it is read and complementary tRNA molecules bring in appropriate amino acids that conform to the mRNA. These amino acids are joined to make polypeptide chains.

How do the bases pair up in nucleotides?
 In DNA, the purine adenine bonds with the pyrimidine thymine and the purine guanine can bond with the pyrimidine cytosine. In RNA, the pyrimidine uracil takes the place of thymine.

What are the three main classes of lipids?
 They are the neutral lipids (have no charge at cellular pH), phospholipids, and steroids.

What can dissolve lipids?
 As a general rule, any nonpolar substance can dissolve water. This is because lipids are usually not charged and are considered nonpolar. Only nonpolar can dissolve nonpolar. Thus polar substances like water cannot dissolve lipids.

What are the main sources of proteins?
 The best and most healthy way to obtain proteins are from legumes, nuts, and beans.

How can the protein conformation be studied?
 Protein structure can be studied in a variety of ways that include X-ray diffraction, and mass spectrophotometry.

Besides DNA and RNA, what are some other different types of nucleotides?
 ATP, cAMP, and NADH are all examples of important nucleotides. ATP is very important since it is the primary energy currency of all cells. cAMP regulates some functions and controls some hormones. NADH functions in oxidation and reduction reactions.

How many base pairs are there in a typical human cell?
 In a typical human haploid cell, there are 3 x 10E9 base pairs.

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