essential amino acid

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essential amino acid (plural essential amino acids)

  1. (biochemistry) One of the nine naturally occurring amino acids that the human body cannot synthesize, and so must be provided by dietary protein.
    Antonym: nonessential amino acid
    Hyponyms: histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, valine

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