noun, plural: fatty acids
1) Any of the group of a long chain of hydrocarbon derived from the breakdown of fats (through a process called hydrolysis). It has a single carboxylic group and aliphatic tail.
2) sub-units of fats, oils and waxes
R-COOH, where R stands for the aliphatic moiety and COOH as the carboxylic group (making the molecule an acid).
Fatty acids can be classified into two major groups depending on the nature of covalent bond: