Leucine (Leu or L) is an amino acid contained in proteins.
Structure of leucine
Like all of the amino acids, leucine has two functional groups, an amine group (NH2) and a carboxyl group (COOH). It has a branched side chain: CH2-CH(CH3)2. It is a hydrophobic amino acid.
Function of leucine
Leucine is an essential amino acid obtained from the diet, particularly wheat germ, tuna, peanuts, salmon and beef.
In addition to being contained in proteins, leucine is involved in the synthesis of sterols by adipose tissue and muscles.
It is also used in the food industry as a flavour enhancer (E641).
Leucine is also a flavour enhancer. © Benjah-Bmm27, Wikimedia, public domain