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Threonine (abbreviated as Thr or T) is an α-amino acid with the chemical formula HO2CCH(NH2)CH(OH)CH3. Its codons are ACU, ACA, ACC, and ACG. This essential amino acid is classified as polar. Together with serine and tyrosine, threonine is one of three proteinogenic amino acids bearing an alcohol group.
The threonine residue is susceptible to numerous posttranslational modifications. The hydroxy side chain can undergo O-linked glycosylation. In addition, threonine residues undergo phosphorylation through the action of a threonine kinase. In its phosphorylated form, it can be referred to as phosphothreonine.
With two chiral centers, threonine can exist in four possible stereoisomers, or two possible diastereomers of L-threonine. However, the name L-threonine is used for one single enantiomer, (2S,3R)-2-amino-3-hydroxybutanoic acid. The second diastereomer (2S,3S), which is rarely present in nature, is called L-allo-threonine.
As an essential amino acid, threonine is not synthesized in humans, hence we must ingest threonine in the form of threonine-containing proteins. In plants and microorganisms, threonine is synthesized from aspartic acid via α-aspartyl-semialdehyde and homoserine. Homoserine undergoes O-phosphorylation; this phosphate ester undergoes hydrolysis concomitant with relocation of the OH group. Enzymes involved in a typical biosynthesis of threonine include:
Threonine is metabolized in two ways:
Foods high in threonine include cottage cheese, poultry, fish, meat, lentils, and sesame seeds.
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Threonine". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|