Basic Science

Carbohydrates: Disaccharides and Oligosaccharides

len Alfred Ajibola - 25th June, 2021 @ 11:09 AM

Topics in Basic Science

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Academic Questions in Basic Science

Please check out our Test Your Knowledge page to see all Questions and Answers

Vaccination involves a process of introducing pathogens or germs into a person in order to prevent such person from the diseases they cause.

  • A. True

  • B. False

With regards to the human health, foreign bodies are best regarded as _____.

  • A. International bodies

  • B. Antilators

  • C. Antibodies

  • D. Antigens

  • E. Antibiotics

  • F. Antidotes

Disease causing organisms are termed _____.

  • A. Pests

  • B. Pathogens

  • C. Vectors

  • D. Insects

  • E. Disease carriers

  • F. All the above options are correct

____ is formed from a reaction utilizing oxygen and glucose in the mitochondria of cells.

  • A. Galactose

  • B. Fructose

  • C. Sucrose

  • D. AMP

  • E. ADP

  • F. ATP

Which of the following statement is false concerning carbohydrates?

  • A. They are composed of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen only

  • B. Carbon has the highest ratio of the constituent elements of carbohydrates

  • C. All carbohydrates are sugars

  • D. Fructose is a carbohydrate

  • E. Natural milk contains lactose and it's a carbohydrate

  • F. Fatty foods contains high calories of energy when compared to the same quantity of carbohydrate foods

Which of the following is a class of food?

  • A. Water

  • B. Fibre

  • C. Roughages

  • D. Latex

  • E. Tanins

  • F. Wax

Brachiation is a specialized form of movement exhibited by _____.

  • A. Human beings

  • B. Babbons

  • C. Chameleons

  • D. Toads

  • E. Millipedes

  • F. Birds

_____ is a form of locomotion whereby an organism move by means of its two hind limbs.

  • A. Pedalism

  • B. Duo Pedalism

  • C. Double Pedalism

  • D. Dual Pedalism

  • E. Bipedalism

  • F. Copedalism

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Carbohydrates:

Carbohydrates, often referred to as sugars or saccharides or carbs, are one of the six classes of food. The others include protein, fats and oils, vitamins, mineral salts and water.

Carbohydrates are the body's first choice of energy and are typically eaten in the form of cooked starch. They are subsequently broken down into glucose, an absorbable and usable form of carbohydrate by the body cells. However, athletes may choose to have their carbohydrate meal directly as glucose since quick energy is required for their immediate activities.

Examples of food containing carbohydrates include table sugar (sucrose), milk (contains lactose as carbohydrates), rice and cassava.

Please read on the concept of food here.

 

Classes of carbohydrates?

Carbohydrates are classified into four types or categories. These are:

  1. Polysaccharides

  2. Monosaccharides

  3. Disaccharides

  4. Oligosaccharides

Please read on polysaccharides and monosaccharides here.

Below are explanations on disaccharides and oligosaccharides:

 

  • Disaccharides

They are composed of two monosaccharides joined together. For this reason, they are also referred to as double sugars.

Disaccharides are often added as sweeteners to food. As an instance, the table sugar called sucrose is a disaccharide often used to sweeten our tea.

Maltose is another disaccharide typically used as an ingredient for making malt drinks, chocolates and candies.

The breast milk contains the disaccharide lactose. Lactose is crucial for the normal growth and development of neonates and infants.

In adults, disaccharides are non essential nutrients. This implies that we can live without them (as adults).

Please read more on nutrients here.

Below is a summary of monosaccharides (single sugars) that make up disaccharides (double sugars).

Maltose = Glucose + Glucose

Lactose = Glucose + Galactose

Sucrose = Glucose + Fructose
Disaccharides - Sucrose, Lactose and Maltose - Len Academy

Other examples of disaccharides include trehalulose and isomaltulose

 

  • Oligosaccharides

The term oligosaccharide has its origin in Greek language. In this regard, 'oligo' means 'few' and saccharide 'sugar'. Juxtaposing both words, oligosaccharide simple imply sugars that comprises of 3 to 10 molecules of monosaccharides.

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Oligosaccharides will typically occur as a family of molecules. As an instance, raffinoses (RFOs) are a family of oligosaccharides found in plants. They are formed from the combinations of galactose, glucose and fructose respectively.

Functionally, a raffinose serve as transport and storage sugars in plants. Also, they aid seed protection by absorbing it's water internally, thus making them dry, firm and preserved.

Below is an image showing the structural formula of raffinose:
Oligosaccharides - Raffinose - Len Academy


Another eample of an oligosaccharide is the fructo-oligosaccharides (FOSs). They are short chains of fructose molecules present in vegetables. They are often considered as dietary fibres which are naturally soluble.

A third example of a naturally occurring oligosaccharide is galactooligosaccharides (GOSs). They consist of short chains of galactose molecules.

It is worthy of note to state that the human milk contains an oligosaccharide called human milk oligosaccharides (HMOs). The HMOs are derived from short chains lactose molecules.

Histologically, oligosaccharides are typically present as glycans around the cells. In this instance, they perform a role in determining the blood types of humans. Also, they aid in cell adhesions.

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Alfred Ajibola is a Medical Biochemist, a passionate Academician with over 7 years of experience, a Versatile Writer, a Web Developer, a Cisco Certified Network Associate and a Cisco CyberOps Associate.


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The uniqueness of man can be defined as that which makes man distinct from every other animal and living organism.

Humans are higher animals when compared to other animals.

Under the classification of living organisms, humans belong to an order termed primates and thus share the same characteristics (as primates). In addition to these features, they also have their unique characteristics.

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Improperly disposed waste litters on road sides, in land fills, gutters and ditches. They are generally bad for the following reasons:

Wastes can be classified into various types. These are:

  • Biodegradable waste

  • Non-Biodegradable waste

  • Refuse

  • Sewage

  • Recyclable waste

  • Electronic waste

  • Green waste

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Below are some benefits of the African Star Apple:

  • It contains high amount of vitamin C

  • It contains a high amount of calcium

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  • It is a powerful antioxidant

  • It aids in weight reduction

  • It contains a high amount of iron

  • Its leaves, fruits and seeds are medicinal

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Disaccharides are composed of two monosaccharides joined together; thus are also referred to as double sugars.

Disaccharides are often added as sweeteners to food; for instance, the table sugar called sucrose is a disaccharide often used by us to sweeten our tea.

Maltose is another disaccharide used as an ingredient for making malt drinks, chocolates and candies.

The breast milk contains the disaccharide -> lactose.

Lactose is very vital for the normal growth and development of infants.

In adults, disaccharides are non essential nutrients. This implies that we can live without them as adults.

Below is a summary of monosaccharides that make up disaccharides (double sugars).

  • Maltose = Glucose + Glucose

  • Lactose = Glucose + Galactose

  • Sucrose = Glucose + Fructose

Other examples of disaccharides include trehalulose and isomaltulose