The maltose molecule in 3-D

The Maltose molecule - rotatable in 3 dimensions

Maltose is a disaccharide - formula C12H22O11 - consisting of two glucose units (12 carbon atoms, and 2 ring-shaped structures, each containing an oxygen atom).

Each glucose unit is effectively the same way up, a reflection of the arrangement in starch - especially amylose. This can be seen when the carbon 6 and associated groups are highlighted. Show ... hide H bonds between these sections.

The two sugars are linked via a glycosidic bond - an α (alpha) 1-4 bond between opposite sides of the 2 glucose molecules.

This bond - effectively an oxygen bridge - is formed as a result of a condensation reaction.

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Note that as in glucose, one of these ring-shaped sections is in equilibrium with a open-chain form in which Carbon 1 has a CHO aldehyde group which gives it reducing properties, so that it reacts with reagents such as Benedict's.
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