"Amino acids are building blocks of proteins, while Fatty acids are key components of cell membranes. Both are essential to life," Elizabeth Landau wrote. The Chemical Laptop searches for the correct balance of Amino and Fatty acids. Amino and Fatty acids can also be found in nonliving sources; but the JPL hopes that the Chemical Laptop can tell the difference. Amino acids come in two types: Scientist call them Left-handed and right-handed. Left and right-handed Amino acids are mirror images of each other and both contain the same components. They are equal in size and electric charge. While searching for the correct balance of Amino and Fatty acids, the Chemical Laptop also searches for the correct balance of right and left-hand Amino acids. For a human to live, we need to have at least 9 Amino acids and 3 fatty acids in our body.
Two enantiomers of a generic amino acid that are chiral.