Any of a class of nitrogen-containing acids. Some
22 amino acids are commonly found in animals and humans. Chains of amino
acids synthesized by living systems are called polypeptides (up to about
50 amino acids) and proteins (more than 50 amino acids). See Peptide; Proteins.
an organic compound that is a basic structural unit
of peptides and proteins. There are over 100 amino acids, 8 of which (isoleucine,
leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan and
valine) are essential for human metabolism.
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