Occurrence In Nature

A number of biologically active peptides occur in nature. Most of the biologically active peptides are synthesized as inactive precursor proteins and processed to an active form by a limited proteolysis. Acid- or base-catalyzed hydrolysis of proteins also produces peptides. Among heat-incoagulable peptides released by the digestion of proteins, those precipitable by the addition of ammonium sulfate are called proteoses and those soluble in saturated ammonium sulfate are called peptones.

Some peptides of microorganisms and plants have a cyclic structure and contain D-amino acid or amino alcohol or amino aldehyde. Those containing constituents other than amino acids are called depsipeptides; peptidic antibiotics belong to this category.

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