enzyme

noun
en·​zyme | \ ˈen-ˌzīm How to pronounce enzyme (audio) \

Definition of enzyme

: any of numerous complex proteins that are produced by living cells and catalyze specific biochemical reactions at body temperatures

Examples of enzyme in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The enzyme from Thermus aquaticus, called Taq polymerase, copies the DNA to make more of it. Devi Shastri, USA TODAY, "How a 1960s discovery in Yellowstone made millions of COVID-19 PCR tests possible," 22 Feb. 2021 The super-enzyme, derived from bacteria that naturally evolved the ability to eat plastic, enables the full recycling of the bottles. Paul Douglas, Star Tribune, "Feels Like October Out There But Milder Days Ahead," 30 Sep. 2020 The drug is a protease inhibitor, which works by inhibiting an enzyme that the virus needs to replicate in human cells. Ed Silverman, STAT, "Pharmalittle: Pfizer Covid-19 pill could be ready by year-end; Warren urges SEC to probe Emergent CEO over stock sales," 28 Apr. 2021 Luciferase is an enzyme that produces light and is found in organisms like fireflies and luminescent marine microorganisms. Adrienne Dunn, USA TODAY, "Fact check: No luciferase enzymes – or satanic connections – in coronavirus vaccines," 23 Apr. 2021 The treatment process essentially involves removing blood stem cells from a patient, using an enzyme to edit the DNA of those cells in a lab, and then reinserting the cells with edited genes back in the patient through a bone marrow transplant. BostonGlobe.com, "Vertex doubles down on gene editing in $900 million investment with CRISPR Therapeutics," 20 Apr. 2021 The drug is part of a class of medicines called protease inhibitors and works by inhibiting an enzyme that the virus needs to replicate in human cells. William A. Haseltine, Forbes, "Pfizer’s New Oral Protease Inhibitor Could Possibly Treat And Prevent Covid-19," 5 Apr. 2021 Amylase, an enzyme that breaks down starch, is released in your saliva to begin the process, Murphy says. Julie Stewart, SELF, "What Are Carbohydrates Really, and Why Are They Important?," 25 Mar. 2021 First, a sensitive enzyme immunoassay (EIA) or immunofluorescence assay (IFA), both of which look for the presence of antibodies, or proteins the immune system produces in response to an antigen (a foreign substance in the body, such as a virus). Kate Fridkis, SELF, "If It Isn’t Chronic Lyme, What Is It?," 14 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'enzyme.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of enzyme

1881, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for enzyme

German Enzym, from Middle Greek enzymos leavened, from Greek en- + zymē leaven — more at juice

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Statistics for enzyme

Last Updated

16 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Enzyme.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/enzyme. Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for enzyme

enzyme

noun

English Language Learners Definition of enzyme

technical : a chemical substance in animals and plants that helps to cause natural processes (such as digestion)

enzyme

noun
en·​zyme | \ ˈen-ˌzīm How to pronounce enzyme (audio) \

Kids Definition of enzyme

: a substance produced by body cells that helps bring about or speed up bodily chemical activities (as the digestion of food) without being destroyed in so doing

enzyme

noun
en·​zyme | \ ˈen-ˌzīm How to pronounce enzyme (audio) \

Medical Definition of enzyme

: any of numerous complex proteins that are produced by living cells and catalyze specific biochemical reactions at body temperatures

More from Merriam-Webster on enzyme

Nglish: Translation of enzyme for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of enzyme for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about enzyme

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