Proteins consist of amino acids that conform to the following structure: R-CH(NH2)COOH
Amino acids contain an amino group, -NH2, and a carboxyl group, -COOH. Amino acids link to each when the carboxyl group of one molecule reacts with the amino group of another molecule, creating a peptide bond and releasing a molecule of water. Amino acids are the basic building blocks of enzymes, hormones, proteins and body tissues.
- A peptide is a compound consisting of 2 or more amino acids.
- Oligopeptides have 10 or fewer amino acids.
- Polypeptides and proteins are chains of 10 or more amino acids; however, peptides consisting of more than 50 amino acids are classified as proteins.