sucrose molecule

Sucrose, also known as cane sugar, is a disaccharide (C12H22O11), which is common in plants but not in animals. It is obtained commercially from sugar beet, sugarcane, maple trees, dat palms, and sweet sorghum. As table sugar, sucrose is the most important of the sugars.


Sucrose is not found in the mammalian body, except in food in the gut. It is a compound of glucose and fructose, into which it is split by the enzyme sucrase, also called invertase or saccharase.


Sucrose, fructose, and glucose all exhibit optical activity and when sucrose is hydrolyzed (by sucrase) the rotation changes from right to left. This is called inversion and an equimolar mixture of glucose and fructose is called an invert sugar.