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Discuss the Application of Enzymes in Biotechnological processes.

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Sheena Shah (12L) Discuss the Application of Enzymes in Biotechnological processes. Enzymes are proteins that act as catalysts to speed up reactions. They are used in different industrial processes to help specific chemical transformations. The main role of an enzyme is to provide an active site, which has a complementary shape to the molecules that bind there. Enzymes only react with one substrate. Substrates are converted to products through the formation of an enzyme substrate complex. Enzymes have the ability to catalyse specific reactions at normal temperatures and pressures. These chemical reactions are controlled by enzymes and are used in biotechnology. Most enzymes used in industry are obtained from microbial sources such as fungi and bacteria. The majority of biotechnological processes use the whole microorganism, however, many new techniques only use isolated enzymes. This is when the enzyme has been purified from the organism. This method is widely being used in the medical, food and brewing industries. The overall advantages of using enzymes in industry are that the enzymes are specific and will therefore only react with one substrate to produce a specific product and are less likely to produce unwanted by-products. ...read more.


The enzymes such as protease are added to the dry flour and activated when water is added to make dough. These help handling the dough and control characteristics such as taste and texture. Baking enzymes means they have to be denatured to inactive proteins during the process. Lipases are now becoming more available for bread making. (www.enzymes.co.uk) Brewing involves the production of alcohol by the action of yeasts on plant material such as barley. The yeast cells can convert the simple sugars into alcohol and carbon dioxide. Endogenous enzymes are released during malting, which degrades the starch and proteins into simple sugars and amino acids which can be utilised by the yeast cells. Malting is an expensive way to manufacture enzymes and not easy to control. Industrial enzymes such as amylase and proteases can be added to unmalted barley, resulting in same simple sugars and amino acids in a more controlled manner. Enzymes have been used in the detergent industries since the 1960's. ...read more.


The product formed would be detectable e.g. fluorescent, which allows for a diagnosis to be recognised. (Letts Revise As Biology) The main applications of enzymes in the leather industry are proteases which help in the dehairing of the animal hides and lipases are used for degreasing. In modern textiles, enzymes are commonly used in the finishing of fabrics and clothes. The main component of cotton and other natural fibres is cellulose. The correct application of cellulase enzyme can remove rough particles giving a glossier fabric. This process is known as biopolishing. The finishing of denim jeans is also a popular application for cellulase in textiles. Before, stonewash denim was faded using pumice stones. Cellulase can replace the stones, causing less damage to the denim. The technique is known as biostoning. Stonewashing enzymes are available as acid cellulases and neutral cellulases. Enzymes are fast, easy techniques that help speed up reactions in biotechnological processes. They are better than traditional techniques where there was more waste and harmful pollution and by-products produced. The main advantage of using enzymes is that they can be reused, which makes them fairly cheap. Enzymes have helped develop the textiles, medical, food and drink industries. ...read more.

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