Dictionary » C » Carbohydrate

Carbohydrate

Definition

noun, plural: carbohydrates

Any of the group of organic compounds consisting of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen, usually in the ratio of 1:2:1, hence the general formula: Cn (H2O) n. Examples include sugar, starch, cellulose and gums.


Supplement

Carbohydrates are the most abundant among the major classes of biomolecules. Chemically, they are simple organic compounds that are aldehydes or ketones with many hydroxyl groups added usually on each carbon atom not part of the aldehyde or ketone functional group.

Most of the carbohydrates follow the general formula: Cn (H2O) n, from where they derive their name, which means hydrates of carbon. However, not all carbohydrates follow this formula and are slightly different in structure from this rule. Moreover, there are some compounds that seem to follow this rule but are not carbohydrates (e.g. formaldehyde).

Carbohydrates may be classified into monosaccharides, disaccharides, oligosaccharides, polysaccharides, and heterosaccharides. The most fundamental type is the simple sugars called monosaccharides, such as glucose, galactose, and fructose. These simple sugars can combine with each other to form more complex types. The combination of two simple sugars is called disaccharide whereas carbohydrates consisting of two to ten simple sugars are called oligosaccharides, and those with a larger number are called polysaccharides.

Carbohydrates are produced in green plants by photosynthesis and serve as a major source of energy in animal diets. They also serve as structural components, such as cellulose in plants and chitin in some animals. Their derivatives play an essential role in the working process of the immune system, fertilization, pathogenesis, blood clotting and development.

More info relating to carbohydrates and their role in our diet can be found in the developmental biology tutorial investigating a balanced diet.


Word origin: From their general formula Cn (H2O) n = hydrates of carbon.
Synonym: saccharide.
See also: gluconeogenesis, macromolecules, nutrition, photosynthesis.


Please contribute to this project, if you have more information about this term feel free to edit this page



Results from our forum


Carbohydrate metaolism

Hi all, I need to do an essay titled Discuss the biochemical principles behind carbohydrate metabolism can anyone give me an idea how to start this and what to include? Thanks.

See entire post
by Biologymad
Sat Dec 01, 2012 10:07 pm
 
Forum: Molecular Biology
Topic: Carbohydrate metaolism
Replies: 2
Views: 1308

The Four Macromolecules

1- this carbohydrate tastes great in coffee, 2- the lipids go well with toast or can be used to fry the eggs, 3- the eggs are rich in polypeptides, 4- nucleic acids are in each cell: one kind lives in the nucleus and organelles ...

See entire post
by Cat
Thu Sep 13, 2012 2:04 am
 
Forum: Molecular Biology
Topic: The Four Macromolecules
Replies: 2
Views: 2318

Re: Please help with my work

Thanks a million for your help. Have attempting a few more and the incorrect ones. 1. fats contain more energy than carbohydrates do, because fat molecules are chemically much more reduced  4c  False  if carbohydrate supply is very low, the body will automatically use your proteins ...

See entire post
by Olympic
Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:47 pm
 
Forum: General Discussion
Topic: Please help with my work
Replies: 6
Views: 7195

Please help with my work

... and oxygen in the same ratio as water ( H20). b) Amino acids do not contain nitrogen c) Fish is a good source of protein and lipid,but not carbohydrate. d) Keratin is a protein found in egg white e) Amino acids are required to make fatty acids f) The biuret test indicates the presence of ...

See entire post
by Olympic
Mon Jul 23, 2012 2:17 pm
 
Forum: General Discussion
Topic: Please help with my work
Replies: 6
Views: 7195

Connection between opioid receptors and fatty acid receptors

... any passage it could. Maybe this nausea started as warning mechanism that stops animals from eating too much fat. THCV. Fats have usually long carbohydrate chain and THC happens to have long carbohydrate chain. While THC activates cannabinoid receptors THCV has bit shorter chain as only structural ...

See entire post
by mhein
Tue Jul 10, 2012 2:00 pm
 
Forum: Evolution
Topic: Connection between opioid receptors and fatty acid receptors
Replies: 4
Views: 6741
View all matching forum results

This page was last modified 10:58, 20 June 2008. This page has been accessed 133,441 times. 
What links here | Related changes | Permanent link