amphiphilic

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From amphi- +‎ -philic.

Adjective[edit]

amphiphilic (comparative more amphiphilic, superlative most amphiphilic)

  1. (chemistry, of a molecule) Being a detergent: having both hydrophilic and hydrophobic (or lipophilic) groups.
    • 1997, Hatada, Macromolecular Design of Polymeric Materials, →ISBN, page 45:
      Sequential living polymerizations of hydrophilic and hydrophobic vinyl ethers from these trifunctional initiators give amphiphilic triarmed block copolymers where the hydrophilic segments may be placed either inner or outer layer of the three arms.
  2. (biochemistry, of a protein, especially an alpha helix) Having one surface consisting of hydrophilic amino acids and the opposite surface consisting of hydrophobic (or lipophilic) ones.

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