FRANCIS LEROY, BIOCOSMOS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY FRANCIS LEROY, BIOCOSMOS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Enzyme with active site. Illustration of the molecular structure of an unknown enzyme, showing its active site (red). Enzymes are protein cata- lysts produced by cells, and which are responsible for speeding up the rate of biochemical reactions. Each enzyme is specific for a particular reaction; interaction with the substrate occurs (typically as a weak bond) at the active site, due to the arrangement of mutually- attractive groups of atoms. After the brief binding of enzyme with substrate at this site, the substrate is changed. An example is the pancreatic enzyme trypsin which breaks proteins into smaller peptide chains.
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