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Biology LibreTexts

3.1: Building Blocks

Biological macromolecules are all polymers of a sort, even fats, in which the fatty acids can be thought of as polymers of carbon. (We will consider fatty compounds - fats, glycerophospholipids, sphingolipids, isoprenoids/terpenoids separately).

The remaining categories of biological macromolecules include proteins, nucleic acids, and polysaccharides. The building blocks of these, respectively, are amino acids, nucleotides, and monosaccharides (sugars). Of these, the most diverse collection of chemical properties is found among the amino acids.

Contributors

Dr. Kevin Ahern and Dr. Indira Rajagopal (Oregon State University)