Glycolipids are sugar- containing lipids and in an animal cell these lipids are derived from sphingosine. The amino group of the sphingosine backbone is acylated by a fatty acid. The identity unit of a glycolipid is linked to the primary hydroxyl group of the sphingosine backbone and one or more sugars are attached to this group. Cerebroside is the simplest glycolipid and it contains a single sugar residue which is either glucose or galactose. More complex glycolipids contain a branched chain of several sugars.
- ↑ J.Berg, J.L Tymoczko, L.Stryer (2007), 6th Edition, Basingstoke: W.H. Freeman and Company