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The Application of Enzymes in Industry and Medicine.

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  • Essay length: 7156 words
  • Submitted: 25/02/2004
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AS and A Level Molecules & Cells

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The Application of Enzymes in Industry and Medicine.

Enzymes are Biological catalysts, allowing the chemical reactions of metabolism to take place, controlling the speed of the reaction. They are found in all living cells and are divided into two main groups, intracellular and extra cellular. Intracellular are found and work inside the cells, therefore are secreted inside the cell membrane, from where they control metabolism. The cells will also produce the extracellular, but these only achieve their full affect outside of the cell, so are secreted outside the cell membrane. Examples of extracellular enzymes include digestion enzymes such as pepsin.

Enzymes are complex globular proteins. Their long peptide chains of amino acids linked by peptide bonds are wound, folded and bonded into a precise 3D structure, owing their activity to this particular shape. They are compounds of high molecular weight.

See Figure 1. (www.worthington-biochem.com)

Hydrogen, ionic, and disulphide bonds as well as hydrophobic interactions all hold the chain in its three-dimensional spherical form. Each enzyme has a unique shape. The precise shape of the active site (the place at which the substrate binds) is so because the enzyme is specific to one

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