Biology as Poetry: Organic Chemistry

Bacteriophage Ecology Group

Sulfhydryl Group


The presence of a sulfhydryl groups defines a thiol. These sulfur-containing functional groups are the defining component of the R group of the amino acid, cysteine. The breakdown of thiols results in the production of hydrogen sulfide which can be indicative of anaerobic decomposition such as can occur in organics-rich muds.

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