Quaternary state of a protein ( usually, although it can apply to other larger molecules, biological or synthetic ) where more than one polypeptide chain assembles to create the final unit. The opposite of a monomer. Oligomer usually suggests some sort of order to the assembly process. A random assembly of proteins is instead called an aggregate. Some common types of oligomers include:

A molecule consisting of just a few monomers.

From the BioTech Dictionary at http://biotech.icmb.utexas.edu/. For further information see the BioTech homenode.

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