The discovery of glycine.

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Table of Contents
definition

Glycine is one of 20 amino acids in proteins. It is a sweet-tasting crystalline amino acid with the chemical formula C2H5NO2. It is a major component of gelatine and silk fibroin and is used as a nutrient and dietary supplement[1].

DISCOVERY

The French chemist Henri Braconnot discovered glycine in 1820. He described his discovery in an 1820 article[2]:

  • He mixed 12 grams of powdered commercial glue (which contained gelatine) with concentrated sulphuric acid and let the solution stand for 24 hours. 
  • He then added some water and boiled the solution for 5 hours, making sure to add some more water from time to time. 
  • He filtered the solution and upon evaporation, it turned into a thick syrup.
  • He left this syrup alone for almost a month and noticed grainy crystals which tasted very sweet.
  • He then isolated these crystals, washed them with weak alcohol and laid them out on a cloth to further crystallise.
DISCOVERER

Here is a portrait[3] of Henri Braconnot:

[ux_image_box img=”1047″ image_width=”40″ link=”https://www.magnoliabox.com/products/henri-braconnot-kw2657634″ target=”_blank”]

1780-1855

[/ux_image_box]

sources
  1. https://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Glycine
  2. https://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=hvd.hx3dvk&view= 1up&seq=119, pages 113-114.
  3. https://www.magnoliabox.com/products/henri-braconnot- kw2657634