MONOSACCHARIDES

Classification of carbohydrates starts from the simplest monosaccharides. They can be represented by the empirical formula of (C – H2O) n. ‘n’ denotes the number of carbon atoms. If a monosaccharide possess 3 carbon atoms (n = 3), it is a triose. Similarly a tetrose, pentose, hexose and heptose can be formed with 4, 5, 6 and 7 carbon atoms respectively. Based on the functional groups they possess, monosaccharides can be further classified into two types, aldoses and ketoses. Dihydroxyacetone, a triose is a well known example of ketose whereas glyceraldehyde is an aldose.