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    Enzyme basic units

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    This is a question on enzymes - can't seem to come up with an answer.
    What are the basic units of enzymes and how are these units arranged and under what conditions do enzymes work best?

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    Enzymes are (mostly) proteins (there are some autocatalytic nucleic acids, but these are a rare exception). The function of enzymes in the cell is to catalyze biochemical reactions, and they do so by binding temporarily to one or more of the reactants of the reaction they catalyze. In doing so, they lower the amount of activation energy needed and thus speed up the reaction. Certain properties of the protein structure of enzymes contribute to their function as catalysts.

    Let's backtrack first: there are two general classes of protein - fibrous and globular. Globular proteins are predominately spherical in shape and are soluble in water. Enzymes are globular proteins. All proteins are comprised of amino acids. In other words, amino acids are the basic building blocks of enzymes. The major functional groups present in an amino acid are the amino group (-NH2) and the carboxylic acid group (-COOH). At least one amino group is required to give the amino acid some basic (alkaline) properties, and ...

    Solution Summary

    This solution explains the basic units of enzymes, how they are arranged and how they work best.