aspartic acid

aspartic acid (əspärˈtĭk) [key], organic compound, one of the 20 amino acids commonly found in animal proteins. Only the l -stereoisomer participates in the biosynthesis of proteins. Its acidic side chain adds a negative charge and hence a greater degree of water-solubility to proteins in neutral solution and has been shown to be near the active sites of some enzymes (see pepsin). Aspartic acid is not essential to the human diet. It was discovered in protein in 1868.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on aspartic acid from Fact Monster:

  • asparagine - asparagine asparagine , organic compound, one of the 20 amino acids commonly found in animal ...
  • uric acid - uric acid uric acid , white, odorless, tasteless crystalline substance formed as a result of purine ...
  • glutamic acid - glutamic acid glutamic acid , organic compound, one of the 20 amino acids commonly found in animal ...
  • urea - urea urea , organic compound that is the principal end product of nitrogen metabolism in most ...
  • amino acid - amino acid amino acid , any one of a class of simple organic compounds containing carbon, hydrogen, ...

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Biochemistry