Transamination and deamination are two types of chemical reactions in which the change of amino groups in organic molecules occur. These processes take place in amino acid molecules and occur mainly as either formation or degradation pathways of amino acids.
What is Transamination?
Transamination is a chemical reaction in which the transfer of an amino group to a ketoacid occurs. This process forms new amino acids. Moreover, this process is responsible for the deamination of most amino acids as well. It is because the amino group of one amino acid undergoes this transfer. Also, this process causes the conversion of essential amino acids into nonessential amino acids.
In biological systems, transamination occurs in the presence of enzymes such as transaminases and aminotransferases. Here, the compound alpha-ketoglutarate acts as the predominant amino group acceptor and it forms glutamate. Hence, the new amino acid that forms there is glutamate. The other product is alpha-keto acid.
What is Deamination?
Deamination is a reaction that involves in the removal of an amino acid group from an organic compound. This reaction requires the presence of deaminases. In other words, deaminases catalyze the deamination process.
Primarily, this reaction takes place in the liver of our body. However, the deamination of glutamate can occur in kidneys as well. The major use of this chemical reaction is that it breaks down amino acids to produce energy. Here, the process removes the nitrogenous part of the amino acid from the molecule and converts it into ammonia. Also, the non-nitrogenous part undergoes recycling and oxidation to produce energy.
What is the Difference Between Transamination and Deamination?
The key difference between transamination and deamination is that the transamination is the transfer of an amino group to a keto acid whereas the deamination is the removal of an amino group. Moreover, transamination involves two molecules: amino acid and ketoacid, while deamination involves one molecule; an amino acid.
Besides the above differences, a significant difference between transamination and deamination is that the transamination involves the conversion of essential amino acids into nonessential amino acids whereas the deamination involves in the breakdown of amino acids to produce energy.
Summary – Transamination vs Deamination
In brief, transamination and deamination are two processes that involve amino acids. The key difference between transamination and deamination is that the transamination is the transfer of an amino group to a keto acid whereas the deamination is the removal of an amino group.