Enzyme Reactions: Importance and Mechanisms

Enzyme reactions are biological processes facilitated by enzymes, which act as catalysts to accelerate chemical reactions in living organisms. Enzymes play essential roles in metabolism and other cellular functions.
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Enzymes | Biochemical Reactions | Cellular Metabolism | Enzyme Kinetics | Biological Catalysts
Prepared by Shruti Sahoo, reviewed by Dr. Eugene Smith

Enzyme Reactions FAQ

Image credit: genome.gov

What do enzymes do in a chemical reaction?

Enzymes ( / ˈɛnzaɪmz /) are proteins that act as biological catalysts by accelerating chemical reactions. The molecules upon which enzymes may act are called substrates, and the enzyme converts the substrates into different molecules known as products.

What is enzyme chemistry?

enzyme, a substance that acts as a catalyst in living organisms, regulating the rate at which chemical reactions proceed without itself being altered in the process. A brief treatment of enzymes follows. For full treatment, see protein: Enzymes.

What is the function of enzymes in a cell?

Enzymes are protein macromolecules that are necessary to initiate or speed up the rate of chemical reactions in the bodies of living organisms. The molecules on which enzymes act are called substrates, and the substance formed is called the product. They are found in all living cells that vary in type based on the function it performs.

How do enzymes accelerate chemical reactions?

Enzymes are biological catalysts that accelerate chemical reactions by lowering the activation energy. Enzymes are proteins consisting of one or more polypeptide chains. Enzymes have an active site …

What is an enzyme in chemistry?

An enzyme is a biological catalyst, a substance that increases the rate of a chemical reaction without being changed or consumed in the reaction. A systematic process is used to name and classify enzymes. In the small intestine, sucrose is hydrolyzed to form glucose and fructose in a reaction catalyzed by sucrase.

Are enzymes reactants?

Enzymes are not reactants and are not used up during the reaction. Once an enzyme binds to a substrate and catalyzes the reaction, the enzyme is released, unchanged, and can be used for another reaction. This means that for each reaction, there does not need to be a 1:1 ratio between enzyme and substrate molecules. Want to join the conversation?

How do enzymes work in a cell?

Almost all enzymes are proteins, comprised of amino acid chains, and they perform the critical task of lowering the activation energies of chemical reactions inside the cell. Enzymes do this by binding to the reactant molecules, and holding them in such a way as to make the chemical bond-breaking and bond-forming processes take place more readily.

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