Triglyceride Molecule

The glyceryl tristearate molecule - rotatable in 3 dimensions

This molecule - glyceryl tristearate, "tristearin" - consists of 3 fatty acid residues, joined by ester links to a glycerol unit.

In this model each fatty acid is stearic acid, C17H35COOH - a saturated fatty acid, but other fatty acids can also form triglycerides, and combinations of different fatty acids are possible.

The molecule has a hydrophobic nature so it is not soluble in water. Most of the carbon atoms are surrounded by hydrogens, and, unlike the components glycerol and stearic acid, there are no projecting -OH groups. The molecular formula is C57H110O6.

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