Think of activation energy as an evil majestic… cat (huh?) …keeping princess, umm (let’s call her derpina) prisoner
…and the substrate as our handsome, brave knight in shining armour… the valiant knight, with the help of his friend the wizard’s magic, has to slay (or pet) the fearsome beast in order to save Princess Derpina from his evil clutches.
The same goes for our buddy the substrate, to form a given product, substrates must overcome activation energy in order to react. Enzymes (wizards) facilitate this by lowering the “energy barrier”, speeding up the reaction (Uic.edu, n.d.)
The lock & key hypothesis states that on an enzyme reactants may only function when bound to a specific point, or active site on an enzyme (Novozymes.com, 2014) . Enzymes are pretty great at distinguishing between molecules and even between isomers of the same molecule and with all the binding going on it’s just the active site and substrates involved.
Unlike a jigsaw puzzle, it’s not actually a perfect fit. Within the binding process the R-groups at the active site actually change its shape slightly, in order to fit to the substrate (induced fit), forming what’s known as an enzyme-substrate complex (Uic.edu, n.d.). The complex, is usually held together by hydrogen/ ionic bonds.
Enzymes undergo inhibition where molecules may interact with the enzyme, hindering its usual functionality.These may include: non-specific, reversible & irreversible- competitive/non-competitive inhibitors.
pinterest.com. 2013. Ninja Cat Riding Majestic Unicorn. [image online] Available at: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/519180663263192185/ [Accessed: 4 Mar 2014].
Uic.edu. n.d. Energy, ATP, Enzymes.. [online] Available at: http://www.uic.edu/classes/bios/bios100/lectures/enzymes.htm [Accessed: 4 Mar 2014].
weheartit.com. 2013. Funny Easter Quotes. [image online] Available at:http://data1.whicdn.com/images/58028535/large.jpg [Accessed: 4 Mar 2014].
Novozymes.com. 2014. What are enzymes? | Novozymes. [online] Available at: http://www.novozymes.com/en/about-us/our-business/what-are-enzymes/pages/default.aspx [Accessed: 3 Mar 2014].
Ibguides.com. n.d. IB Biology Notes – 7.6 Enzymes. [online] Available at: http://ibguides.com/biology/notes/enzymes-hl [Accessed: 3 Mar 2014].