fatty acid

fatty acid

fatty acid, any of the organic carboxylic acids present in fats and oils as esters of glycerol. Molecular weights of fatty acids vary over a wide range. The carbon skeleton of any fatty acid is unbranched. Some fatty acids are saturated, i.e., each carbon atom is connected to its carbon atom neighbors by single bonds; and some fatty acids are unsaturated, i.e., contain at least one carbon-carbon double bond (see chemical bond). When fats and oils are hydrolyzed with an alkali, the fatty acids are liberated as their metal salts; these salts are soaps. Butyric acid is a fatty acid found in butter.
In enzymology, a long-chain-fatty-acid-[acyl-carrier-protein] ligase is an enzyme that catalyzes the chemical reaction

ATP + an acid + [acyl-carrier-protein] rightleftharpoons AMP + diphosphate + acyl-[acyl-carrier-protein]

The 3 substrates of this enzyme are ATP, acid, and [acyl-carrier-protein], whereas its 3 products are AMP, diphosphate, and acyl-[acyl-carrier-protein].

This enzyme belongs to the family of ligases, specifically those forming carbon-sulfur bonds as acid-thiol ligases. The systematic name of this enzyme class is long-chain-fatty-acid:[acyl-carrier-protein] ligase (AMP-forming). Other names in common use include acyl-[acyl-carrier-protein] synthetase, acyl-[acyl carrier protein] synthetase, acyl-ACP synthetase, acyl-[acyl-carrier-protein]synthetase, stearoyl-ACP synthetase, and acyl-acyl carrier protein synthetase. This enzyme participates in fatty acid metabolism.


  • Ray TK, Cronan JE Jr "Activation of long chain fatty acids with acyl carrier protein: demonstration of a new enzyme, acyl-acyl carrier protein synthetase, in Escherichia coli". Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 73 4374–8.

External links

The CAS registry number for this enzyme class is .

Gene Ontology (GO) codes

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