One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A compound which is one of the four constituent bases of nucleic acids. A purine derivative, it is paired with thymine in double-stranded DNA.
Alternative name: 6-aminopurine; chemical formula: C₅H₅N₅
- ‘The strands consist of sugar and phosphate groups, the sugars being attached to a base - adenine, thymine, guanine, or cytosine.’
- ‘The nitrogen-containing units are the bases: adenine, cytosine, guanine, and uracil.’
- ‘Causes and effects The structure of thalidomide is similar to that of the DNA purine bases adenine and guanine.’
- ‘There are four types of nucleotides in DNA, each containing one of four bases - adenine, guanine, cytosine, or thymine.’
- ‘These bases are adenine, cytosine, guanine and thymine and can be represented as A, C, G, and T, respectively.’
Late 19th century: coined in German from Greek adēn ‘gland’ + -ine.
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