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Various Biological and Organic Chemistry Questions

1. Serine exists in its zwitterion form at a pH of 5.7. Draw the structural formula for the same. Explain the manner in which the structural formula of polar and non-polar amino acids would vary.

2. Discuss, in detail, the role played by DNA and RNA in genetic diseases. What are the breakthroughs, if any, in the treatment/management of genetic diseases?

3. Classify six kinds of amino acids according to the functions that they serve in the human body, stating an example for each class.

4. Discuss the manner in which the isoenzymes of LDH can be used as diagnostic tools.

5. Define a genetic mutation and state the types of genetic mutations. Discuss the effects of genetic mutations.

6. The HIV virus that causes AIDS destroys the immune system in the body. Classify the HIV virus and explain the statement.

Solution Preview

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1. Serine in its zwitterions form with a net charge of zero is shown in the structure in the attachment. It is said to be at the isoelectric point (pI). At a higher pH (pH >5.7) than its isoelectric point serine is negatively charged on its carboxylate group and neutral on the amino group. If the pH of the environment is less than the isoelectric (pH < 5.7) point of Serine it will be positive on the amino group and neutral on the carboxylate group. Serine thus behaves like a base and accepts extra proteins becomes positively charged at pH < 5.7. Given that Serine is a polar neutral amino acid, it will prefer to be at the isoelectric point at pHs that are slightly larger or smaller than it isoelectric point pH. It will act like a buffer, so structure attached is always more likely for pHs around the isoelectric point. In this struture the carboxylate group is negatively charge and the amino group is positively charged

Amino acids can be grouped as neutral (non polar and polar) or polar (basic or acidic). Polar (basic or acidic) amino acid have R groups that can easily accept or donate protons (H+) depending on changes in pH. So for polar (basic) amino acids, at pH above its pI (isoelectric point), the amino acid easily loses its protons and become negatively charged. At pH < pI, the amino acid easily gains a protons to become positively charged. For non polar or polar (neutral) amino acids like serine, they prefer to remain in the zwitterion form by acting like a buffer at slight changes of pH.

2. The role role of DNA and RNA in genetic diseases can best be addressed by understanding the interconnection between DNA, RNA, protein and diseases. Genetic information are contained in DNA. RNA is formed from DNA by the process of transcription. The resulting RNA from transcription contains the genetic information of the original DNA. RNA formed by transcription undergoes translation to form proteins which are a consequence of the genetic information passed over from the original DNA to the RNA. ...

Solution Summary

The solution provides answers to various biological and organic chemistry questions regarding amino acids, serine structure, DNA/RNA, isoenzymes of LDH, genetic mutation & the HIV virus.

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