- A glucosan of high molecular weight, resembling amylopectin in structure [with α(1,4) linkages] but with even more highly branched [α(1,6) linkages, as well as a small number of α(1,3) linkages], found in most of the tissues of the body, especially those of the liver and muscle; as the principal carbohydrate reserve, it is readily converted into glucose. SYN: animal dextran, animal starch, hepatin, liver starch.- g. synthase, g. starch synthase a glucosyltransferase catalyzing the incorporation of d-glucose from UDP-d-glucose into 1,4-α-d-glucosyl chains. A deficiency of the liver enzyme may lead to a type of hypoglycemia.
* * *gly·co·gen 'glī-kə-jən n a white amorphous tasteless polysaccharide (C6H10O5)x that constitutes the principal form in which glucose is stored in animal tissues, occurs esp. in the liver and in muscle and also in fungi and yeasts, and resembles starch in molecular structure and in the formation of only glucose on complete hydrolysis called also animal starch
* * *n.a carbohydrate consisting of branched chains of glucose units. Glycogen is the principal form in which carbohydrate is stored in the body: it is the counterpart of starch in plants. Glycogen is stored in the liver and muscles and may be readily broken down to glucose.
* * *gly·co·gen (gliґko-jən) [glyco- + -gen] a large polysaccharide similar to amylopectin but more highly branched, consisting of chains of glucose residues in α-(1,4) linkage with branches created by α-(1,6) linkages. It constitutes the major carbohydrate reserve of animals, stored primarily in liver and muscle, and is synthesized and degraded for energy as demanded.
Medical dictionary. 2011.