What are the four macromolecules?

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gsenviro eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Macromolecules are large sized biological molecules composed of a number of smaller sub-units. There are 4 types of macromolecules:

  • Carbohydrates: These are made up of sub-units known as monosaccharides and hence the larger carbohydrates are known as polysaccharides. Glucose is a common monosaccharide, while sucrose is a commonly used disaccharide. Carbohydrates provide energy storage for the body and form a part of our regular diet, apart from their numerous other functions.  
  • Proteins: These are made up of smaller sub-units known as amino acids. Proteins are also known as polypeptides. Proteins catalyze various reactions in our body and are also responsible for DNA replication.
  • Nucleic Acids: These are made up of smaller sub-units known as nucleotides. There are two nucleic acids: DNA (or deoxyribonucleic acid) and RNA (ribonucleic acid). DNA contains the genetic information, while RNA converts this information to amino acid sequences. 
  • Lipids: These are not generally considered macromolecules, since their sizes are relatively small as compared to the other macromolecules and they are generally not polymers. Lipids include vitamins, fats, waxes, etc. They form the cell membrane and also act as energy storage in the body.

Hope this helps. 

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