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Tuesday 24 June 2008

Definition: Amphiphile is a term describing a chemical compound possessing both hydrophilic and hydrophobic properties. Such a compound is called amphiphilic or amphipathic.

This forms the basis for a number of areas of research in chemistry and biochemistry, notably that of lipid polymorphism. Organic compounds containing hydrophilic groups at both ends of a prolate molecule are called bolaamphiphilic. Common amphiphilic substances are soap and detergent.

See also

- lipids