MCAT Biochemistry Practice Test 5: Lipid Structure and Function

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1. Which of the following is NOT a type of glycolipid?

  • A. Cerebroside
  • B. Globoside
  • C. Ganglioside
  • D. Sphingomyelin

2. During saponification:

  • A. triacylglycerols undergo a condensation reaction.
  • B. triacylglycerols undergo ester hydrolysis.
  • C. fatty acid salts are produced using a strong acid.
  • D. fatty acid salts are bound to albumin.

3. Which of the following best describes the structure of steroids?

  • A. Three cyclopentane rings, one cyclohexane ring
  • B. Three cyclohexane rings, one cyclopentane ring
  • C. Four carbon rings, differing in structure for each steroid
  • D. Three cyclic carbon rings and a functional group

4. Soap bubbles form because fatty acid salts organize into:

  • A. lysosomes.
  • B. micelles.
  • C. phospholipid bilayers.
  • D. hydrogen bonds.

5. Steroid hormones are steroids that:

I. have specific high-affinity receptors.

II. travel in the bloodstream from endocrine glands to distant sites.

III. effect gene transcription by binding directly to DNA.

  • A. I only
  • B. III only
  • C. I and II only
  • D. I and III only

6. Why are triacylglycerols used in the human body for energy storage?

  • A. They are highly hydrated, and therefore can store lots of energy.
  • B. They always have short fatty acid chains, for easy access by metabolic enzymes.
  • C. The carbon atoms of the fatty acid chains are highly reduced, and therefore yield more energy upon oxidation.
  • D. Polysaccharides, which would actually be a better energy storage form, would dissolve in the body.

7. Which of the following is correct about fat-soluble vitamins?

I. Vitamin E is important for calcium regulation.

II. Vitamin D protects against cancer because it is a biological antioxidant.

III. Vitamin K is necessary for the posttranslational introduction of calcium-binding sites.

IV. Vitamin A is metabolized to retinal, which is important for sight.

  • A. III only
  • B. I and II only
  • C. III and IV only
  • D. II, III, and IV only

8. Which of the following is true of amphipathic molecules?

  • A. They form protective spheres in any solvent, with hydrophobic molecules interior and hydrophilic molecules exterior.
  • B. They have two fatty acid chains and a polar head group.
  • C. They are important to the formation of the phospholipid bilayer and soap bubbles.
  • D. They have a glycerol base.

9. Which of the following is/are true about sphingolipids?

I. They are all phospholipids.

II. They all contain a sphingosine backbone.

III. They can have either phosphodiester or glycosidic linkages to their polar head groups.

  • A. I only
  • B. III only
  • C. II and III only
  • D. I, II, and III

10. Which of the following statements about saturation is FALSE?

  • A. It can describe the number of double or triple bonds in a fatty acid tail.
  • B. It determines at least one of the properties of membranes.
  • C. More saturated fatty acids make for a more fluid solution.
  • D. Fully saturated fatty acids have only single bonds.

11. Which of the following is true about glycerophospholipids?

  • A. Glycerophospholipids can sometimes be sphingolipids, depending on the bonds in their head groups.
  • B. Glycerophospholipids are merely a subset of phospholipids.
  • C. Glycerophospholipids are used in the ABO blood typing system.
  • D. Glycerophospholipids have one glycerol, one polar head group, and one fatty acid tail.

12. Which of the following statements about terpenes is FALSE?

  • A. Terpenes are strongly scented molecules that sometimes serve protective functions.
  • B. Terpenes are steroid precursors.
  • C. A triterpene is made of three isoprene moieties, and therefore has 15 carbons.
  • D. Terpenes are made by plants and insects.

13. Which of the following is true about cholesterol?

  • A. Cholesterol always increases membrane fluidity in cells.
  • B. Cholesterol is a steroid precursor.
  • C. Cholesterol is a precursor for vitamin A, which is produced in the skin.
  • D. Cholesterol interacts only with the hydrophobic tails of phospholipids.

14. Which of the following statements regarding prostaglandins is FALSE?

  • A. Prostaglandins regulate the synthesis of cAMP.
  • B. Prostaglandin synthesis is inhibited by NSAIDs.
  • C. Prostaglandins affect pain, inflammation, and smooth muscle function.
  • D. Prostaglandins are endocrine hormones, like steroid hormones.

15. Which of the statements regarding waxes is FALSE?

  • A. Waxes generally have melting points above room temperature.
  • B. Waxes are produced only in plants and insects and therefore must be consumed by humans.
  • C. Waxes protect against dehydration and parasites.
  • D. Waxes are esters of long-chain fatty acids and long-chain alcohols.