What's the difference between a phosphate head and phosphate group? Watch

Bertybassett
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Hello, what is the difference? A recent markscheme said do not accept a phosphlipid contains a phosphate group? Many thanks
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jazz_xox_
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Because a phospholipid is made up of a 'head' and a 'tail'- it's this arrangement that makes up the bilayer. Technically the phospholipid does have a phosphate group present (in replacement of one fatty acid molecule of a triglyceride), but when referring to the phospholipid bilayer (presuming this is what the question was on), refer to it as a hydrophilic head and hydrophobic tail
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Bertybassett
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(Original post by jazz_xox_)
Because a phospholipid is made up of a 'head' and a 'tail'- it's this arrangement that makes up the bilayer. Technically the phospholipid does have a phosphate group present (in replacement of one fatty acid molecule of a triglyceride), but when referring to the phospholipid bilayer (presuming this is what the question was on), refer to it as a hydrophilic head and hydrophobic tail
thanks, but when do you refer to it as a group, or a head, or as just a phosphate, outside of the context of the question?
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username2752874
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(Original post by Bertybassett)
Hello, what is the difference? A recent markscheme said do not accept a phosphlipid contains a phosphate group? Many thanks
Fake news - it does.


There is no difference - in WJEC, we referred to it as either. They probably want you to say head to drive home its position on a phospholipid.

If you said group, it could imply that you think it might be on the tail etc
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Bertybassett
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(Original post by Kyber Ninja)
Fake news - it does.


There is no difference - in WJEC, we referred to it as either. They probably want you to say head to drive home its position on a phospholipid.

If you said group, it could imply that you think it might be on the tail etc
bossman
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jazz_xox_
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(Original post by Bertybassett)
thanks, but when do you refer to it as a group, or a head, or as just a phosphate, outside of the context of the question?
Well a phospholipid contains 2 fatty acid tails and a phosphate group, so you are right to call it this- I've never seen it rejected on any of the questions I've done

If you are referring to cell membrane/bilayer I'd call it a head, and if you are talking about the actual composition of the phospholipid, call it a phosphate group. I wouldn't worry about this too much though.
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