Testing for Sugar, Starch and Proteins
The Chemistry of Cells
There are four major classes of biological macromolecules:
- nucleic acids
All organisms need the same 4 basic macromolecules to survive. Some organisms are able to make some of these compounds through processes like photosynthesis or chemosynthesis which forms carbohydrates. The nutrients that these organisms cannot create must be consumed as food or absorbed from the surrounding. For example, plants need nutrients from the soil in addition to the carbohydrates they create through photosynthesis. Other organisms, like humans, much consume carbohydrates, lipids and proteins through food we eat, in the form of nutrients.
- Carbohydrates (Sugars) --> Monosaccharides come together to form polysaccharides
- Proteins --> Amino Acids come together to form Proteins
- Genetic Material --> Nucleic Acids come together to for DNA and RNA
- Lipids --> Fatty Acids are major components of Lipids
Monomers and Polymers:
Carbohydrates, proteins, and nucleic acids are built from small molecular units generically called "monomers". Monomers will bond together end-to-end forming larger molecules we can generically refer to as "polymers". The single units are celled monomers, because "mono" means "one". The large molecules that are formed from many monomers are called polymers, because "poly" means "many". The monomers that make up polymers are bound to one another using strong covalent bonds.