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Amylose

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Definition

noun, plural: amyloses

A polysaccharide formed from alpha-D-glucopyranosyl units in alpha-(1,4) glycosidic bonds


Supplement

An amylose is a polysaccharide. It is formed from linkages of alpha-D-glucopyranosyl sub-units connected to each unit by alpha-(1,4) glycosidic bonds. It means that the glucose molecules are connected at 1-carbon of one to the 4-carbon of the next. The number of glucose sub-units ranges typically from 300 to 3000 or more. It is found in starch and glycogen. A starch is a complex polysaccharide made up of a large number of glucose as monomeric units joined together by glycosidic bonds. Two types of molecules comprise a pure starch: amylose and amylopectin. The starch is the means the plants store excess glucose. A glycogen is a branched polymer of glucose that is mainly produced in liver and muscle cells, and functions as secondary long-term energy storage in animal cells. It is sometimes referred to as animal starch.

In plants, the amylose usually makes up about 30% of the stored starch. Alpha-amylase is the enzyme that breaks down the starch molecule into simpler sugars.

Commercially, amylose is an important emulsifier and thickener. In laboratory, it serves as a marker especially through iodine test for the presence as well as the concentration of starch.


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