Literature Review on Digestive Enzymes free essay sample

Enzymes are complex proteins that cause a specific chemical change in all parts of the body (David C. Dugdale, 2011). When we understand enzymes we understand cells (Marshall Brian, 2001). In many organisms most chemical reactions are catalyzed -when a substance speeds up the rate of a chemical reaction- by enzymes. Each enzyme controls a certain function that happens in a cell. Still each one has its own process and rate that it converts molecules. Studying enzymes shows how chemical reactions work.

Enzymes only work with particular molecules and if something is different or is out of place the oddity affects the enzyme from doing its job (Andrew Rader, 2012). The enzyme binds one or more specific molecules called reactants in its active site, which is specially shaped to fit it. The substance or substances on which an enzyme acts is called its substrate. The enzyme and substrates together make an enzyme-substrate complex. The interactions between substrates and enzymes weaken the chemical bonds in the substrates, which cause a link between the two, and leads to a formation of a different molecule.

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Furthermore, that new molecule is released from the active site, and the enzyme resumes its original shape and starts the process all over again (Nazir Okur, 2007). An essential enzyme in the body system is the digestive enzyme. It helps the body digest the foods we eat by breaking down food components such as proteins, carbohydrates, and fats (Theresa Phillips, 2008). Additionally they convert them into smaller absorbable nutrients that the body can use to build cells, tissues, and organs (Ron Harder, 2001).

The most common enzymes are amylase, lactase, lipase, and proteases. Amylase enzymes are necessary for digestion of carbohydrates; it breaks down starches into sugars. Lactase enzymes break down the sugar and lactose found in dairy products. Lipase is the enzyme responsible for the fats that we consume breaking down. And then proteases enzymes break down proteins. The major types of proteases found within the digestive system are: chymotrypsin, pepsin, and trypsin (Barbara Bradley Bolen, 2012).

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