Fatty Acid Synthesis

Copyright © 2011 Kevin Ahern


For fatty acid synthesis,

I must reverse the path

Of breaking fatty acids,

Though you’ll wonder ‘bout the math


Each cycle of addition starts

With carbons one two three

Yet the products of reactions

Number carbons evenly


The answer is that CO2

Plays peek-a-boo like games

By linking to an Ac-CoA

Then popping off again


Three reactions are like oxidations

cept they’re backwards here

Reduction, dehydration

Then two hydrogens appear


The product of the process

Is a sixteen carbon chain

The links are saturated

No double bonds remain


For them desaturases toil

Arranging only cis

The animals get delta nine

But no more go past this


And last there’s making longer ones

Eicosanoidic fun

They’re made by elongases

In the e. reticulum


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