An alpha-amino acid, beta-4-imidazolyl alanine, N:CH.NH.CH:C.CH2CH(CH2)COOH, essential for optimal growth in infants; first found as a decomposition product of the protamine of sturgeon testes (Kosel, 1896), obtainable from many proteins by the action of sulfuric acid and water. The decarboxylation of histidine results in the formation of histamine. Forms part of the catalytic site of many enzymes.
Dorland's Medical Dictionary
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Last update: Sept 15, 2013; 1:18 a.m. LAH