ZOOMING DOWN THE TREE OF LIFE TO LIFE'S BUILDING BLOCKS
EXTENSION: heteropolymers and homopolymers

Open the Tree of Life web page. As you go down the Tree of Life, record whether the monomers are the same in the polymers or different.

Macromolecules in the Tree of Life

 

 What is its monomer called?

a. Amino acid

b. Sugar

c. Nucleotide

d. Fatty acid

 Is the monomer a homo-
polymer
with only one kind of monomer? Write "1" if it is.
Is the monomer a hetero-
polymer
with 2-4 different kinds of monomers? Give the number, if you know.
Is the monomers a hetero-
polymer
with more than 4 different kinds of monomers? Give the number, if you know.
  CARBOHYDRATES

 *

 *

 *

 *

From maple syrup to sucrose

 sugar

heteropolymer -  

2 different sugars
 

EXAMPLE 

From tree trunk to cellulose

 sugar

1
   
  From leaf to starch        
 PROTEINS

 *

  *
   
From a monkey to the protein hemoglobin      Up to 20 amino acids  
 From the coccoon of a silk worm to the protein fibroin        

From human hair to the protein keratin

       

From a bee to the protein mellitin

 

       
 NUCLEIC ACIDS

 *
     
From parrot to the nucleic acid DNA    

 4
 
 From soil bacteria to DNA        
LIPIDS 

 *
     

From an iguana to phospholipids