- 7.1: Monosaccharides and Disaccharides
- Carbohydrate or glycan biochemistry is very complex and difficult, owing to the stereochemical complexity of simple sugars, the large number of positions on the sugars used to form linkages between other sugars to create polymers, the large number of chemical modification to base sugars, and the lack of a genetic template to instruct glycan polymer formation. It is no wonder that our understanding of complex glycans has developed after that of the chemically simpler polymers like nucleic acids a
- 7.2: Polysaccharides
- Polysaccharides contain many monosaccharides in glycosidic links, and may contain many branches. They serve as either structural components or energy storage molecules. Polysaccharides consisting of single monosaccharides are homopolymers. Among the most common are starch, glycogen, dextran, cellulose and chitin. We'll discuss these grouped together based on whether the acetal link is alpha or beta.
Thumbnail: Cellulose molecular structure (CC BY-SA 3.0 Unported; Pintor4257 via Wikipedia)