|Ribose is a five carbon sugar that is often found associated with RNA nucleotides. Ribose and its related compound, deoxyribose, are the building blocks of the backbone chains in nucleic acids, deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA). Ribose is a key component of ribonucleic acid (RNA). It is also a precursor for deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA).
Deoxyribose (more precisely 2-deoxyribose) is a five-carbon sugar (a pentose) derived from the pentose sugar ribose by the replacement of the hydroxyl group at the 2 position with hydrogen, leading to the net loss of an oxygen. Ribose forms a five member ring composed of four carbon atoms and one oxygen. Hydroxyl groups are attached to three of the carbons. The other carbon and a hydroxyl group are attached to one of the carbon atoms adjacent to the oxygen. In deoxyribose, the carbon furthest from the attached carbon is stripped of the oxygen atom in what would be a hydroxyl group in ribose. Ribose and deoxyribose are classified as monosaccharides, aldoses, pentoses, and are reducing sugars.
The nucleic acids play critical roles in information storage and protein synthesis. The two nucleic acid polymers, deoxyribonucleic acid and ribonucleic acid are made up of monomeric units called nucleotides. Nucleotides consist of a purine or pyrimidine base, a sugar unit and one to three phosphate groups. Nucleotides and their derivatives can serve as mediators or regulators of many metabolic processes. Nucleotides also activate intermediates in many reactions.
D-ribose is one of the metabolites of glucose when the latter is metabolized in the human body via the oxidative pentose pathway. This pathway yields pentose phosphates that can interconvert and yields glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate, which can be used as energy source. Ribose can also be activated by ATP to 5-phosphoribosyl-1-pyrophosphate (PRPP), which is involved in the de novo biosynthesis of purines and pyrimidines in a very energy (ATP)-demanding synthetic route and in salvage pathways of these bases.
Ribose is a 5-carbon sugar, or pentose, that when combined with adenine, produces adenosine, one of the components of the energy currency of the cell – ATP (adenosine triphosphate). ATP is a nucleotide that has a ribose sugar and three phosphate groups. ATP is a high-energy molecule used for energy storage by organisms. ATP also plays an important role in the synthesis of nucleic acids. ATP molecules are also used to store the usable energy that plants convert in cellular respiration.