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The simplest amino acid is glycine, H2NCH2CO2H. The common feature of amino acids is that they contain the functional groups: an amine group, –NH2, and a carboxylic acid group, –CO2H. An amino acid can function as either an acid or a base. For glycine, the acid strength of the carboxyl group is about the same as that of acetic acid, CH3CO2H, and the base strength of the amino group is slightly greater than that of ammonia, NH3.
(a) Write the Lewis structures of the ions that form when glycine is dissolved in 1 M HCl and in 1 M KOH.
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