73 COMMON TERMINOLOGIES IN BIOCHEMISTRY AND THEIR MEANINGS-1

 

The following terminologies will help students of biochemistry have a quick grasp of the subject's concepts:

 

1. 3D-Structure: The three-dimensional arrangement of atoms in a molecule.

2. Activation energy: The minimum energy required for a chemical reaction to occur.

3. Active site: The region of an enzyme where substrate molecules bind and undergo a chemical reaction.

4. ADP: Adenosine diphosphate, a molecule involved in energy transfer in cells.

5. Allosteric modulation: The regulation of enzyme activity by molecules that bind to a site on the enzyme other than the active site.

6. Alpha helix: A common structural motif in proteins, in which a polypeptide main chain forms the inner part of a right-handed helix, with the side chains extending outward.

7. Amino acids: The building blocks of proteins, consisting of an amino group, a carboxyl group, and a side chain.

8. Amphipathic molecules: Molecules that have both hydrophobic and hydrophilic regions.

9. Anabolic reaction: A metabolic reaction that builds larger molecules from smaller ones.

10. Anti-parallel strands: Two strands of nucleic acid that run in opposite directions.

11. Antibody: A protein produced by the immune system that recognizes and binds to specific molecules.

12. Apoptosis: Programmed cell death.

13. ATP: Adenosine triphosphate, a molecule involved in energy transfer in cells.

14. Base pair: Two nucleotides in opposite strands of DNA or RNA that are held together by hydrogen bonds.

15. Beta sheet: A common structural motif in proteins, in which two or more polypeptide chains are aligned side by side, with hydrogen bonds between the chains.

16. Biomolecule: A molecule that is produced by living organisms.

17. Catabolism: The set of metabolic reactions that transform fuels into cellular energy.

18. Catabolite activator protein (CAP): The camp response protein; when bound to camp, CAP binds to an inverted repeated of the lac operon, near position -61 relative to the start site of transcription, to stimulate transcription.

19. Catabolite repression: The repression by glucose of catabolic enzymes required for the catabolism of carbohydrates other than glucose.

20. Catalyst: A substance that increases the rate of a chemical reaction without being consumed in the reaction.

21. Cellulose: A polysaccharide that is the main component of plant cell walls.

22. Chaperone: A protein that assists in the folding of other proteins.

23. Chemical equilibrium: The state in which the rate of the forward reaction is equal to the rate of the reverse reaction.

24. Cholesterol: A lipid that is an important component of cell membranes.

25. Chromosome: A structure in the nucleus of a cell that contains DNA.

26. Coenzyme: A non-protein molecule that is required for the activity of an enzyme.

27. Competitive inhibitor: A molecule that binds to the active site of an enzyme and prevents substrate binding.

28. Conformation: The three-dimensional shape of a molecule.

29. Covalent bond: A chemical bond in which two atoms share a pair of electrons.

30. Denaturation: The loss of a protein's three-dimensional structure, usually due to heat or chemical treatment.

31. Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA): The nucleic acid that carries genetic information in cells.

32. Disaccharide: A carbohydrate consisting of two monosaccharides.

33. DNA polymerase: An enzyme that catalyzes the synthesis of DNA.

34. Double helix: The structure of DNA, consisting of two complementary strands wound around each other.

35. Electronegativity: The ability of an atom to attract electrons in a chemical bond.

36. Enzyme: A protein that catalyzes a chemical reaction.

37. Enzyme-substrate complex: The product of specific binding between an enzyme and its substrate.

38. Fatty acid: A molecule consisting of a long hydrocarbon chain and a carboxyl group.

39. Feedback inhibition: The regulation of enzyme activity by the product of the reaction.

40. Fermentation: The anaerobic breakdown of glucose to produce energy.

41. Gene: A segment of DNA that codes for a specific protein or RNA molecule.

42. Genetic code: The set of rules by which the sequence of nucleotides in DNA or RNA is translated into the sequence of amino acids in a protein.

43. Gluconeogenesis: The synthesis of glucose from non-carbohydrate precursors.

44. Glycogen: A polysaccharide that is the main storage form of glucose in animals.

45. Glycolysis: The breakdown of glucose to produce energy.

46. Hemoglobin: The protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen.

47. Heterotroph: An organism that obtains its energy from organic compounds.

48. Hydrogen bond: A weak chemical bond between a hydrogen atom and an electronegative atom.

49. Hydrophilic: Having an affinity for water.

50. Hydrophobic: Having an aversion to water.

51. Inhibitor: A molecule that decreases the rate of a chemical reaction.

52. Ion: An atom or molecule that has gained or lost one or more electrons.

53. Isomer: A molecule that has the same chemical formula as another molecule, but a different arrangement of atoms.

54. Isotope: An atom of an element that has a different number of neutrons than the most common form of the element.

55. Kinase: An enzyme that catalyzes the transfer of a phosphate group from ATP to another molecule.

56. Lipid: A molecule that is insoluble in water, including fats, oils, and steroids.

57. Macromolecule: A large molecule, such as a protein or nucleic acid.

58. Messenger RNA (mRNA): The RNA molecule that carries the genetic information from DNA to the ribosome, where it is translated into protein.

59. Metabolism: The set of chemical reactions that occur in living organisms to maintain life.

60. Mitochondria: The organelles in eukaryotic cells that produce energy.

61. Monomer: The building block of a polymer.

62. Monosaccharide: A simple sugar, such as glucose or fructose.

63. Mutation: A change in the DNA sequence of a gene.

64. Nucleic acid: A polymer consisting of nucleotides, such as DNA or RNA.

65. Nucleotide: The building block of nucleic acids, consisting of a sugar, a phosphate group, and a nitrogenous base.

66. Organic molecule: A molecule that contains carbon.

67. Oxidation: The loss of electrons by a molecule or atom.

68. Peptide bond: The covalent bond between two amino acids in a protein.

69. Phospholipid: A lipid that is a major component of cell membranes.

70. Photosynthesis: The process by which plants and other organisms convert light energy into chemical energy.

71. Polymer: A large molecule consisting of repeating subunits.

72. Polysaccharide: A carbohydrate consisting of many monosaccharides.

73. Primary structure: The linear sequence of amino acids in

 

 

Students should understand that this terminologies are inexhaustive and the definitions given here are concise but highly simplified.

More terminologies will be given in subsequent posts.

 

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