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Question 4

The melting points and solubility in water of amino acids are generally higher than that of the corresponding halo acids. Explain.


Both acidic (carboxyl) as well as basic (amino) groups are present in the same molecule of amino acids. In aqueous solutions, the carboxyl group can lose a proton and the amino group can accept a proton, thus giving rise to a dipolar ion known as a zwitter ion.

Due to this dipolar behaviour, they have strong electrostatic interactions within them and with water. But halo-acids do not exhibit such dipolar behaviour.

For this reason, the melting points and the solubility of amino acids in water is higher than those of the corresponding halo-acids.

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