• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The Use Of Enzymes in Medicine

Extracts from this document...


The Use Of Enzymes in Medicine The application of enzymes in medicine (or enzymology) is a constantly evolving industry. This is mainly due to huge improvements in technology (recombinant DNA) and genetic engineering in recent years (Fullick, 2000). Enzymes form a critical part of understanding diseases and their causes, as enzyme deficiencies are often central to many genetic diseases. Some harmful bacteria are also more effective due to their enzyme activity (www.enzymes.co.uk /answer_medicine.htm). Medically used enzymes can be used to diagnose, treat and cure many medical problems or dysfunctions. Enzymes are a hugely important part of our own metabolic pathways and biological processes, but can also be used in an industrial format. Often referred to as organic catalysts, they allow metabolic reactions to occur and control these reactions in such a way that the amount of products produced can comfortably meet the needs of the cells. Enzymes are specific to certain biochemical reactions. The first application of enzymes in medicine I am going to examine is Analysis. Glucose oxidase and peroxidase are the most frequently used enzymes for analysis. ...read more.


* If the plate produces a fluorescent signal then the substance was present. The ELISA test is often the first stage in screening for Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) (Curry, 2002). This allows sufferers to be treated more quickly and will often prolong their lives. Similar tests can also be performed to test for the presence of certain enzymes. For example, a doctor may prescribe a test for liver enzymes in the bloodstream if he/she suspects a damaged liver may be the concern. The second application of enzymes I shall examine is pharmaceuticals. The Pharmaceutical industry has begun to see the advantages of enzymes and more and more products are placed on the open market every month. Minor medical problems can also be treated with enzymes. An example is the cleaning of teeth and dentures. Papain has a well known use; to remove stains from teeth (Pickering, 1994). Companies such as Novozymes (www.novozymes.com) are now producing enzymes which can clean not only dentures (EverlaseTM 6.0 T) ...read more.


Enzyme Replacement Therapy replaces the defected glucocerebrosidase for functioning glucocerebrosidase. Although ERT is likely to be a lifelong treatment, the patient often feels as though they have had a new lease of life (http://www.healthsystem.virginia.edu/ uvahealth/peds_genetics/vitamin.cfm). Enzymatic debridement a form of wound therapy which involves the breakdown of unwanted tissue, often enhanced through the use of enzymes. Enzymes often used in wound therapy include streptokinase and streptodonase (http://www.ncchta.org/fullmono/mon51 4.pdf). In conclusion, enzymes play a major part in the effectiveness of the medical industry on its patients. Enzymes allow doctors to diagnose people quicker and with much more accuracy than would be possible without biosensors or assays, allowing treatment to be more successful. The pharmaceutical industry also received a huge boost when the properties of enzymes were put to good use. Drugs to aid digestion, enzymes which aid teeth cleanliness and anti-inflammatory agents allow for quick and easy treatment of minor medical annoyances. And finally the application of enzymes in hospitals, such as Enzyme replacement therapy and to aid surgical processes, often results in life saving or life prolonging treatment being successful. Many people would be much more seriously ill without the application of enzymes in medicine. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Molecules & Cells section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Molecules & Cells essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    How does the concentration of enzymes affect the breakdown of starch by a-amylase in ...

    4 star(s)

    By the looks of the results in the table, it appears as though the values are fluctuating, but getting closer and closer together. This means that there is a possibility that, judging from my average results, there is a certain concentration where the graph will become level, and the concentration

  2. The Application of Enzymes in Industry and Medicine.

    Meaning the enzyme looses its activity and the rate of reaction falls. This is often why Phosphate buffers are used in applications of enzymes, because they maintain a specific, constant pH concentration. Many enzymes have an optimum pH of around 7, but again some have evolved to suit their surroundings.

  1. Should homeopathy be available on the NHS?

    These results were taken from the "Clinical Research Evidence in Homeopathy prepare by the BHA. Control group Summary trial finding: no. of RCTs (%) Total Positive Negative Statistically non-conclusive Placebo 52 (43%) 3 (3%) 65 (54%) 120 Other than placebo 11 (50%) 8 (36%) 3 (14%) 22 TOTAL 63 (44%)


    Next I will obtain all equipment, so that I do not have to look for it in between the experiment and so that can carry the experiment out systematically. I will wash the beakers, cylinders and syringes and then wash/wipe them so that if any chemicals or substances are present

  1. The Application of Enzymes in Industry and in Medicine

    How they affect the reactions can be understood using the principle described above. The enzyme is thought to reduce the "path" of the reaction. This shortened path would require less energy for molecule of substrate converted to product. Given a total amount of available energy, more molecules of substrate would

  2. The Application of Enzymes in Industry and Medicine

    A theory to explain the catalytic action of enzymes was proposed by the Swedish chemist Savante Arrhenius in 1888. He proposed that the substrate and enzyme formed some intermediate substance, which is known as the enzyme substrate complex. The reaction can be represented as: If this reaction is combined

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work