alpha helix

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Related to Alpha helices: alpha helix, Beta sheets

alpha helix

[′al·fə ′hē·liks]
(cell and molecular biology)
A spatial configuration of the polypeptide chains of proteins in which the chain assumes a helical form, 0.54 nanometer in pitch, 3.6 amino acids per turn, presenting the appearance of a hollow cylinder with radiating side groups.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Previous work had shown that combinations of just three amino acids are sufficient to form bundles of spiral-shaped structures called alpha helices.
Alpha helices were found to be easiest to predict, with various researchers correctly predicting the location of seven, eight or nine of the molecule's 10 helices.
Photo: Part of the tertiary structure of the enzyme lactate dehydrogenase, showing the spatial arrangement of its alpha helices and beta-pleated sheets.