Os aminoácidos são moléculas orgânicas formadas por átomos de carbono, hidrogénio e oxigénio e alguns podem ainda conter moléculas de enxofre na sua composição. Todos os aminoácidos são moléculas orgânicas formadas por um grupo carboxílico (COOH), um grupo amina (NH2), uma molécula de hidrogénio (H) e um grupo radical, interligados através de um átomo de carbono central. O grupo radical varia consoante o aminoácido, ou seja, cada um dos 20 aminoácidos existentes contém o seu próprio radical.

Os aminoácidos podem dividir-se entre as seguintes categorias:


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