The Human Body Is Driven By Reactions Essay

1543 Words Jul 27th, 2015 null Page
The human body is driven by reactions. Much of those reactions rely on enzymatic processes. Enzymes are proteins that in many cases act as catalysts to speed up reactions taking place all over the body. From metabolism to ocular functions, enzymes are necessary for the activities of everyday life. As such, it is important to gain an understanding of enzymes and the common mechanisms that dictate much of human and nature’s actions. This insight will also illustrate how some enzymes are utilized in the eye for day to day function.
How Enzymes Work There are a host of enzymes in the body. Acting as catalysts, enzymes optimize the rates of biochemical reactions in cellular tissues without themselves getting consumed. Enzymes increase the rate of a reaction by lowering the activation energy to convert a reactant into a product (Whikehart, 2003). This makes it easier for reactions to proceed from reactant to product, as smaller amounts of energy are required to form the product. What makes this possible is shape. Substrates bind to a region of the enzyme known as the active site; a sort of cleft outside, or small cavern inside, of the catalytic protein’s structure. This bond allows the enzyme to hold the substrate in a preferential orientation, facilitating rapid conversion first to an intermediate and then to a product. The act of a substrate binding to the enzyme is a relatively specific process, known as the lock and key, or induced fit, model (Barr, 2015). Each enzyme has…

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