Do carbohydrates have amino groups?

2 Answers
Apr 6, 2018



Amino acids have amine #(-NH_2)# groups in them, but carbohydrates do not. From the term, carbohydrates only contain carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen atoms, and they vary in shapes and sizes. Amine groups contain nitrogen in them, and carbohydrates do not have nitrogen in them, and so they cannot contain amine groups.

Hope this helps!

Apr 6, 2018

Carbohydrates can have amino groups - but they generally have different functions that the regular "sugars" we think of.


Simple carbohydrates don't. But amino sugars do. These are the sugars that make up posttranslational modification glycosylation groups. Glucosamine, N-Acteyl Glucosamine, Galactosamine. These sugars show up on the cell surface of most cells.

Amino groups aren't on starch, cellulose, ect, but they are extisinively used in cell-surface glycosylations and cell-cell receptor sites.

In my biochemistry class, i tell students, "any time two cells interact, the interaction is almost always mediated by cell-surface sugars" - these sugars almost always have amino groups.

So, yeah, they have them.