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A monomer is a molecule of any class of organic compounds that can bind chemically to the same molecules or other compounds to form a large molecule or polymer containing large number of repeating units of monomers. Polysaccharides, polypeptides, and polynucleotides are some of the biopolymers in living cells. In general monomers that contain either multiple bonds, or two or more functional groups, or rings containing three to seven atoms can undergo polymerization. The chemical properties of the polymers are derived from their monomer units, while the physical properties of polymers are different. Polymers, depending on their physical properties, are characterised as thermoplastics, thermo sets, elastomers and fibers.
Amino acids, nucleotides, monosaccharides, and fatty acids are the monomers, which produce natural polymers proteins, nucleic acids, polysaccharides and lipids, respectively. There are vast number of synthetic polymers namely polystyrenes (from styrenes), nylon (from caprolactams), Buna-N (from butadiene and acerylonitrile), polyacrylonitriles (from acrylonitrile derivatives), and PVC (vinyl chloride), made commercially. Several polymers are used in many forms in day to day life, and they have wide range of applications in every field of research, including chemistry research as polymer-supported catalysts/scavengers, asymmetric synthesis, drug discovery and delivery.