Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 4


Activity 1 Anticipation
Skim the first sentence of each paragraph to anticipate the content of the text.

Activity 2 Reading task

Read the text to answer the questions:

1. What is the relationship between enzymes and chemical reactions?

2. What would happen to milk without enzymes?
3. Why is every reaction in a cell catalyzed by a different enzyme?
4. What is a co-enzyme?
5. When is the function of co-enzymes impaired?
6. How does environment influence enzymes?

Enzymes, the key proteins in the cell, determine in large part all of the properties of the
cell. They are responsible for the cell's ability to carry out its functions necessary for cell
multiplication. Enzymes catalyze (speed up) the large number of chemical reactions in the
cell. The conversion of one substance (the substrate) to another (the product) has been often
measured at varying intervals. In the absence of an enzyme, the substrate, the substance on
which the enzyme acts, is changed into a product so slowly that it is impossible to measure
the product's formation. However, an enzyme can convert substrate into a product in a short
time. For example, if milk is left at room temperature for several days, it sours as a result of
the action of bacterial enzymes on the substrate, lactose, to form the final product, lactic acid.
If the milk did not contain microorganisms that could break down lactose, the conversion of
lactose to lactic acid (souring) would still occur, but it would take many thousands of years.
A single enzyme molecule can convert as many as one million substrate molecules per second
to products. Reactions between molecules can occur rapidly in the absence of enzymes if the
temperature or pressure is raised to very high levels as can be accomplished in a chemical
laboratory. However, life cannot exist under these conditions. Thus, enzymes take the place of
heat and high pressure, allowing organisms to live at the relatively mild temperatures that
exist on and beneath the surface of the earth.
An enzyme functions first by combining, through weak bonding forces, with its substrate.
This interaction places a stress on the chemical bonds in the substrate. The interaction places a
stress on the chemical bonds in the substrate, which weakens them enough to break them and
then forms new bonds. Enzymes act in two steps. First, the substrate binds to a specific
portion of the enzyme, the active, or catalytic, site, to form an enzyme-substrate complex
(Figure 13). Second, the products of the reaction are released; leaving the enzyme unchanged
and free to combine with new substrate molecules. The arrangement of the enzyme and its
substrate is commonly referred to as a "lock-and-key" arrangement; the substrate is the key
and the enzyme the lock. Since the key must fit into the lock precisely, any particular enzyme
will act on only one or a limited number of substrates, all of which must have a similar shape
to fit the active site. This explains why almost every reaction in a cell is catalyzed by a
different enzyme. As a result, hundreds of different enzymes exist in the cell, but relatively
few molecules of each enzyme are needed, since they can be used over and over again.
Many enzymes cannot function unless they have another molecule, a coenzyme, bound to
them. Coenzymes are small nonprotein molecules such as nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide,
abbreviated NAD, which is more than twice the size of a nucleotide. All enzymes have the
same general function – to transfer molecules, atoms, or electrons from one molecule to
another. In some cases, this molecule is transferred when the coenzyme is still bound to the
enzyme; in other cases, the coenzyme separates from the enzyme in the transfer process.
There are many different coenzymes but the same coenzyme can bind to different enzymes, so
there fewer different coenzymes than there are enzymes. In some cases, the coenzyme is
bound very tightly to the enzyme so that it is essentially a part of the enzyme as it carries out
its function. In other cases, the coenzyme can readily separate from one enzyme and move to
another enzyme.
All coenzymes are synthesized from vitamins. If an organism lacks a vitamin, the
functions of all the different enzymes whose activity requires that coenzyme are impaired.
Thus, a single vitamin deficiency has serious consequences in animals. Besides, the enzymes
are influenced by the environment, which affects how rapidly cells multiply. The features of
the environment that are most important include temperature, pH, and salt concentration.
Most enzymes function best at low salt concentrations and at pH values slightly above 7. In
addition to being affected by extreme environmental conditions, the enzymes are inhibited by
a variety of compounds. Some compounds inhibit in a reversible manner; others in an
irreversible manner. Whether reversible or irreversible depends on whether the enzyme
functions after the inhibitor is removed. In reversible inhibition, the inhibitor binds to but
readily separates (dissociates) from the enzyme. In irreversible inhibition, the inhibitor binds
very strongly to the enzyme and does not dissociate readily. In both types, attachment occurs
to the active site of the enzyme, which prevents the substrate from binding to the site.

Adapted from Microbiology, A Human Perspective by Nester, Roberts, Pearsall, Anderson

Activity 3 Text comprehension

Decide whether the following statements are true or false:

1. An enzyme takes a long time to convert substrate into a product. T F

2. The substrate binds to any part of the enzyme. T F
3. The substrate is the lock and the enzyme is the key. T F
4. Every reaction in a cell is catalyzed by a different enzyme. T F
5. The lack of vitamin impairs the functioning of enzymes. T F
6. Most enzymes function best at high salt concentrations. T F

Activity 4 Text cohesion

What is the role of the following :

however (line 7)
thus (line 15)
since (line 26)
unless (31)
as (line39)
besides (line44)

Activity 5;Find all discource markers in the text and explain it

Activity 5