Enzymes are biological catalysts; they increase the rate of metabolic reactions; almost all biological reactions involve Enzymes. Enzymes are a class of proteins which catalyze all types of bio-chemical reaction, such as digestion, respiration, muscular contraction and metabolism. All enzymes are Globular Proteins with a specific tertiary shape; they are usually specific to only one reaction. The part of the Enzyme that acts as Catalyst is called the active site.
The composition of enzymes is based on two main components, namely: 1. Proteinic Component 2. Non Proteinic Component.
1. Proteinic Component Enzymes are Protein in nature and the proteinic component of enzymes is called Apoenzyme. 2. Non Proteinic Component Most of the enzymes need a non proteinic component for their activity, which is known as Cofactor. Without Cofactor enzymes cannot show any enzymatic activity. In some enzymes the Cofactor is simply metal ion or organic molecules or ions.
Enzymes are classified into six major classes on the basis of type of reaction it catalyze.
1. Oxido Reductases – Redox Reaction
2. Transferases – Transfer of Group
3. Hydrolases – Hydrolysis Reaction
4. Lyases – Addition Reaction
5. Isomerases – Conversion of Isomers
6. Ligases – Condensation Reaction
Certain factors affects Enzyme Activity, they include 1. pH Every enzyme has its own optimum pH at which it shows maximum activity. 2. Temperature Every enzyme has its own optimum temperature at which its shows maximum activity. Most of the enzymes show maximum activity between 37ºC – 50ºC. 3. Other Factors Other factors which effect the enzyme activity are substrate concentration, enzyme concentration and presence of certain ion etc.
In conclusion enzymes have a lot of functions few of which includes: supplying energy, digesting foods, purifying your blood, removal of waste products, regulate or inhibit drugs metabolisms.