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The molecular structures of alpha-linolenic acid, an omega-3 fatty acid is shown. Alpha-linolenic acid has three double bonds located eight, eleven, and fourteen residues from the acetyl group. It has a hooked shape.
Alpha-linolenic acid is an example of an omega-3 fatty acid. It has three cis double bonds and, as a result, a curved shape. For clarity, the carbons are not shown. Each singly bonded carbon has two hydrogens associated with it, also not shown.

The farthest carbon away from the carboxyl group is numbered as the omega ( ω ) carbon, and if the double bond is between the third and fourth carbon from that end, it is known as an omega-3 fatty acid. Nutritionally important because the body does not make them, omega-3 fatty acids include alpha-linoleic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), all of which are polyunsaturated. Salmon, trout, and tuna are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Research indicates that omega-3 fatty acids reduce the risk of sudden death from heart attacks, reduce triglycerides in the blood, lower blood pressure, and prevent thrombosis by inhibiting blood clotting. They also reduce inflammation, and may help reduce the risk of some cancers in animals.

Like carbohydrates, fats have received a lot of bad publicity. It is true that eating an excess of fried foods and other “fatty” foods leads to weight gain. However, fats do have important functions. Many vitamins are fat soluble, and fats serve as a long-term storage form of fatty acids: a source of energy. They also provide insulation for the body. Therefore, “healthy” fats in moderate amounts should be consumed on a regular basis.

Waxes

Wax covers the feathers of some aquatic birds and the leaf surfaces of some plants. Because of the hydrophobic nature of waxes, they prevent water from sticking on the surface ( [link] ). Waxes are made up of long fatty acid chains esterified to long-chain alcohols.

The photo shows leaves on a plant; the leaves appear thick, shiny, and waxy.
Waxy coverings on some leaves are made of lipids. (credit: Roger Griffith)

Phospholipids

Phospholipids are major constituents of the plasma membrane, the outermost layer of animal cells. Like fats, they are composed of fatty acid chains attached to a glycerol or sphingosine backbone. Instead of three fatty acids attached as in triglycerides, however, there are two fatty acids forming diacylglycerol, and the third carbon of the glycerol backbone is occupied by a modified phosphate group ( [link] ). A phosphate group alone attached to a diaglycerol does not qualify as a phospholipid; it is phosphatidate (diacylglycerol 3-phosphate), the precursor of phospholipids. The phosphate group is modified by an alcohol. Phosphatidylcholine and phosphatidylserine are two important phospholipids that are found in plasma membranes.

The molecular structure of a phospholipid is shown. It consists of two fatty acids attached to the first and second carbons in glycerol, and a phosphate group attached to the third position. The phosphate group may be further modified by addition of another molecule to one of its oxygens. Two molecules that may modify the phosphate group, choline and serine, are shown. Choline consists of a two-carbon chain with a hydroxy group attached to one end and a nitrogen attached to the other. The nitrogen, in turn, has three methyl groups attached to it and has a charge of plus one. Serine consists of a two-carbon chain with a hydroxyl group attached to one end. An amino group and a carboxyl group are attached to the other end.
A phospholipid is a molecule with two fatty acids and a modified phosphate group attached to a glycerol backbone. The phosphate may be modified by the addition of charged or polar chemical groups. Two chemical groups that may modify the phosphate, choline and serine, are shown here. Both choline and serine attach to the phosphate group at the position labeled R via the hydroxyl group indicated in green.

A phospholipid is an amphipathic molecule, meaning it has a hydrophobic and a hydrophilic part. The fatty acid chains are hydrophobic and cannot interact with water, whereas the phosphate-containing group is hydrophilic and interacts with water ( [link] ).

Questions & Answers

diagram of Prokaryotic cells
Magreth Reply
where is it?
Yazi
ʜɪ
Malikie
ʜɪ
Malikie
where is the diagram?
Yazi
waiting.....
Yazi
what
Malikie
good morning guyz
Joelia
gd morning
Hannalyn
morning how are u doing
Paul
doing all fyn en u
Joelia
👍👍👍
Gruxz
morning everyone.. by is Grace we have be saved... Ephesians 2:8....
Cosmo
hi
Kisa
hey guys am new
Ellie
u a most wlcm
Joelia
🍑🐕
Ken
Hello guys im new
Sulaiman
u are welcome
Peace
what is a cell of a bacteria called
Sahfe Reply
what is genotype
James
genotype: this is the combination of alleles an organism has for a given characteristic..
Cosmo
what is maiotic
Gabriel Reply
what is sexual reproduction
Gabriel
what are the effects of concentration gradient in the uptake of water by plant's
Harleen Reply
ls it ok if you have sex during pregnancy
Kags Reply
no
Bernard
yes!!!
Yazi
Yes
Babie
hello
Cabdi
Babie Maseuse .. Hello .. how are you ?
kf
yes it make the baby's strength stay longer
REAL
Who are you?
Babie
why not it's nicer and more enjoyable more than ok for the woman
Lamin
danso from the Gambia and you why do you ask
Lamin
as long as the woman is comfortable and in any possible position good for her
Lamin
unless medically advised to stop or hault and those conditions are also applicable to certain problem in pregancies. Pls any further comment pls never hesitate to ask
Lamin
how tell us
Tony
an assignment for you pls
Lamin
it's recommended
Nyakato
Hello
george
hi how are you?
Lamin
Fine
george
hello everyone
Cosmo
Good night to everyone am from Zambia may the Grace of the Lord be with you all
Cosmo
u too hv gd dreams
Joelia
thanks colleagues and wish you all the best insha Allah
Lamin
InshaAllah
Joelia
Marsha Allah
Lamin
yes
James
What is the meaning of organ
Ronald Reply
tissue combined to form organ
zameer
join
Elishs
orga- these are tissues join together to perform a specific functions.
Elishs
then what are tissues
Kags
group of cells working together to perform a particular function
Harleen
tissue are group of cells put together to perform a certain goal
Bernard
What will happen when read blood cell placed in 0.5 % Nacl solution
zameer Reply
what is biology
Tariro Reply
biology is the study of living organisms
Bernard
examply is the study of.
Nantamu
biology is the study of life.
Nantamu
what is biology
Francis Reply
kidny with large and and many glomeruli are characcteristic feathure of ?
zameer
Can you please put up the notes for antibiotics
Jesus Reply
I can't
Francis
we should first know what is antibiotics.what is antibiotics.
Francis
A cell is the basic functional unit of life.
Jael
what is a cell ?
Rabecca Reply
A cell is the basic functional unit of all organisms
Glandwell
A cell is a basic functional and structural unit of life.
Mavis
please, emphasize more on the coronary circuit
Toyyiba Reply
define the photosynthesis
Sabrinah Reply
list the type of protein
Sabrinah
sugar.glucose
Tamirat
renin,pepsin
Nyakato
peptides
Nyakato
what is photosynthesis
Francis
what is biology
Nathan Reply
branch of science which deal with living and non living things
zameer
different branches of biology
linus
zameer is right
Onuoha
we don't study non living things in biology
mejury
biology is simply the study of life
Toyyiba
biology can simply be the branch of science that deals with the study of flora and fauna
Nyakato
Biology is the study of life
Peace
What is Diffusion
Soliu
The word "Bio" means life and "Logy" means study or knowlegde". Biology is the study of Life (living organisms from microorganisms to plant and animals), their behaviour, mode of living, actions, e.t.c
adewunmi
Bio means life and logy means study of so in other words Biology means study of life
Peace
what is zameer
Francis
what is biology
Pamodou Reply
is the study of life
George
Biology is the study of life
Peace
the word "Bio" is the greek word for "Life" while "Logy" is the knowledge, study of Life. Therefore, Biology is the study or knowledge of life in which case can be from micro organism to plants to animals, their mode of life, features, characteristics, survival e.t.c
adewunmi
biology is the study of living organisms
mejury
study of living organisms
Moses

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Source:  OpenStax, Biology. OpenStax CNX. Feb 29, 2016 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11448/1.10
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