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  1. Describe proteins as possessing the same (amide) linkages as nylon but formed from the linking of amino acids.

Proteins have the same amide linkage as nylon, but instead of being made from two different monomers, proteins are made up from twenty. These monomers are all amino acids (you might have learned from biology that proteins are made from amino acids). All amino acids have the amine (-NH2) and carboxylic acid (-COOH) groups in common). It is formed through condensation reaction as water is formed.

  1. State that proteins can be hydrolysed to amino acids under acid or alkaline conditions (the structures and names are not required).

In our bodies, protein in our food is broken down to amino acids with the help of hydrochloric acid and enzymes (biological catalysts) speed up the reaction. In a lab, we can break down protein into amino acids by heating them with hydrochloric acid.


This is called hydrolysis. In a hydrolysis, compounds react with water to break down to form two or more products.

When proteins are hydrolysed, the amide linkages are converted to carboxylic acid ad amine functional groups- the reverse of the polymerisation reaction.

Notes submitted by Lintha

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