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Complex lipids or heterolipids

They are saponifiable lipids in whose composition in addition to an alcohol and one or more fatty acids there is a phosphoric acid or a carbohydrate.

Complex lipids are also called membrane lipids, as they are the main constituents of the plasma membrane.

They have an amphipathic behavior. When in contact with water, complex lipids form bilayers, with the lipophilic areas on the inside and the hydrophilic ones on the outside.

The complex lipids are divided into two groups: