Medical Dictionary

alcohol dehydrogenase

noun

medical Definition of alcohol dehydrogenase

:any of various dehydrogenases that catalyze the reversible oxidation of an alcohol to an aldehyde or ketone
Note: In humans, alcohol dehydrogenase is found especially in the liver and mucous-membrane lining of the stomach as a zinc-containing enzyme composed of two identical subunits that catalyzes the oxidation of an alcohol (such as ethanol) to an aldehyde (such as acetaldehyde) in the presence of NAD.
  • Normally, alcohol is broken down by the enzyme alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH), which in turn produces acetaldehyde, a toxic compound that can cause high blood pressure, skin flushing, and vomiting.
  • —Meredith F. SmallDiscoverJuly 2002
abbreviation ADH

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