Can anyone explain to me how to identify epimers and anomers in carbohydrates (sugars)? Also, state examples.
Epimers and anomers are both optical isomers that differ in the configuration at a single carbon atom, but there is a difference in their definitions.
Epimers are optical isomers that differ in the configuration of a single carbon atom
For example, D-galactose and D-mannose are epimers of D-glucose.
D-Galactose is an epimer of D-glucose because the two sugars differ only in the configuration at
D-Mannose is an epimer of D-glucose because the two sugars differ only in the configuration at
When a molecule such as glucose converts to a cyclic form, it generates a new chiral centre at
The carbon atom that generates the new chiral centre (
Anomers are special cases — they are epimers that differ in configuration only at the anomeric carbon.
For example, α-D-glucose and β-D-glucose are anomers.
The α form has the anomeric
The β form has the anomeric
In D-fructose, the carbonyl group is at
α-D-Fructofuranose and β-D-fructofuranose are anomers.