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Definition of Tryptophan

Tryptophan: An amino acid, one of the 20 building blocks of protein. A dietary essential amino acid, tryptophan is necessary for optimal growth of children. Bacteria in the intestine break tryptophan down to compounds that largely are responsible for the unpleasant odor of feces. Symbol: Trp.

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=22835
Last Editorial Review: 6/14/2012

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