PROF. ARTHUR LESK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PROF. ARTHUR LESK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Computer graphics image of actinidin, an enzyme found in kiwi fruit which functions to break down proteins. Actinidin is one of a family of proteolytic enzymes that exist in various fruits. A related enzyme, papain, occurs in papaya. The function of actinidin & its relatives (collectively known as the sulphydryl proteases) is to break down proteins, an action similar to that of the digestive enzymes in animals. Actinidin finds a use in the food industry as a meat tenderizer, but its natural role is obscure. In this image, the pink rods represent the alpha helices, blue ribbons for the beta sheets & the disulphide bridges are in yellow.
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