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 Research will test five compounds that limit the activity of GSK-3 enzymes, which play a role in immune regulation. Emily Bamforth, cleveland, "‘Cytokine storms:' Why doctors are exploring extreme inflammatory response in severe coronavirus patients," 6 May 2020 The chemical targets enzymes in the cow’s gut that create methane. Adam Satariano, New York Times, "The Business of Burps: Scientists Smell Profit in Cow Emissions," 1 May 2020 Shop from the brand's extensive line of natural skin-care products, like the best-selling Resurfacing Mask known for its glow-boosting ingredients like pomegranate enzymes, the moisturizing Hydrating Floral Essence, and so much more. Kaleigh Fasanella, Allure, "The Best Sales on Beauty Products This Week," 27 Apr. 2020 Research has shown estrogen may have an effect on a protein known as angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), for example. Roni Caryn Rabin, BostonGlobe.com, "Can estrogen and other sex hormones help men survive COVID-19?," 27 Apr. 2020 Specifically, NSAIDs blocks two enzymes, COX-1 and COX-2, that are necessary for prostaglandins to form. Sarah Jacoby, SELF, "Can You Use Ibuprofen to Manage Coronavirus Symptoms?," 24 Apr. 2020 The virus takes advantage of another human enzyme—such as furin or the inelegantly named TMPRSS2—which can unwittingly come along and activate the spike protein. Sarah Zhang, The Atlantic, "All the Ways Scientists Think a Coronavirus Drug Could Work," 8 Apr. 2020 The scheme was launched for the movement of Covid-19-related reagents, enzymes, medical equipment, testing kits, personal protective equipment (PPE), masks, gloves, and other accessories needed for emergency workers. Niharika Sharma, Quartz India, "Even in trying times, India’s private airlines take part in coronavirus relief," 7 Apr. 2020 Originally discovered in compost, the enzyme can break down plastic to its chemical building blocks within a few hours. Nusmila Lohani, The Christian Science Monitor, "Points of Progress: Breakthrough in plastic recycling, and more," 1 May 2020

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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Time Traveler for enzyme

Time Traveler

The first known use of enzyme was in 1881

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Statistics for enzyme

Last Updated

19 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Enzyme.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/enzyme. Accessed 27 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for enzyme


How to pronounce enzyme (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of enzyme

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


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


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

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More from Merriam-Webster on enzyme

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with enzyme

Spanish Central: Translation of 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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