Table of Contents > Health Dictionary > Hydrogen bond

Hydrogen bond

A bond arising from the sharing of a hydrogen atom, covalently bound to a strongly electronegative element (N, O, or a halogen), with another strongly electronegative element (N, O, or a halogen). In substances of biologic importance, the most common hydrogen bonds are those in which H links N to O or N; such bonds link purines on one strand to pyrimidines on the other strand of nucleic acids, thus maintaining double-stranded structures as in the Watson-Crick helix.
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