Amino Acids & Zwitterions

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  • Created by: Siobhan
  • Created on: 15-01-13 21:06
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Amino Acids
Alpha () Amino Acid
Alpha Amino acids are molecules where the Carboxylic Acid (COOH) and the
Amino group (NH2) are bonded to the same carbon atom.
The physical properties at room temperature:
o Crystalline
o High melting point
o Solid
A
Hydrogen from the OH group moves to the nitrogen in the Amino group to
form a Zwitterion.

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Although we know this structure exists, we do not use the Zwitterion in
equations unless we are specifically asked to do so. We use the non-charged
structure.
Amino acids will resist changes in pH when small quantities of acid or alkali
are added
o If H+ ions are added (Acid conditions) the amino acid group will pick
them up.
o If OH- ions are added (Alkali conditions) the Amino acid group will lose
protons in order to neutralise the alkaline surroundings.…read more

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