quadratic binding equation

Dr E. Buxbaum EB15 at le.ac.uk
Tue Jan 27 19:55:36 EST 1998

>Victor Henri's [not Henry's] seminal paper is available in English
>translation at > > http://www.biokin.com/papers/henri/index.shtml > This is
useful, his work does deserve more recognition >If you look, you will see
that Henri was in fact interested in the >reaction -kinetics- (i.e.,
reaction time course) instead of binding. >Therefore, what is usually called
the 'Henri equation' is an integral >instead of differential equation (see
above paper). This is something I pointed out in my original post. However,
binding and enzymatic turnover are directly related because v = k+2 * [ES].
So the only difference between the equations for binding and enzymatic rate
is the use of Kd (ratio of the assoziation and dissociation rate constants)
for the former and Km (which also takes k+2 into account) for the latter.
>Mr. Buxbaum's joke (I assume) about French being an obscure language
>leading to Henri's paper not being noticed needs some commentary as >well.
First of all, Michaelis & Menten (1913) quote Henri's work >exensively, and
state that Henri's 1903 paper (and his 1902 book) were a >direct motivator
of their own investigations. So well known indeed that the Henri equation is
usually called the Langmuir isotherm (the latter used it to describe the
binding of gases to solid surfaces in 1928, if memory serves me right).
>Secondly, if French (as opposed to German) is -not- a language of >science
for Mr. Buxbaum, then perhaps the names Descartes [geometry], >LeChatelier
[chemistry], Foucault [physics], Fourier & LaPlace >[mathematics] do not
belong to the scientific domain? A fairly >chauvinistic concept, I would
say. At the time in question german, and not french, was the language of
science. Other languages have served this purpose at different times, today
we use english. This does not mean that scientists from other countries do
not do important work, it just means that their work may get ignored if they
publish in their native tongue. That has nothing to do with chauvinism, just
with convenience. Of course one could discuss which languages are most
suitable for science, but I do not wish to get flamed again... >Finally,
"Comptes Rendus..." far from being an 'obscure' journal is the >flagship
publication of the French Academy of Sciences. In the history >of European
learned societies, the French Academy played a crucial role >long before
Germany was even formed as a nation-state. This is historically not correct.
The precise date of the formation of the german nation state is certainly a
matter of discussion (somwhere between the defeat of the romans by the
combined germanic tribes under Arwinius ("Herrman the Cherusker") in the
battle at the Teutoburg forrest 9 AD and the rise of the Merowinger kings in
the 5th century AD, depending on taste), but it was long before the french
academy was formed. Indeed, France itself split of the "Holy Roman Empire of
German Nation" with the treaty of Verdun in 843 AD, when the empire of
Carolus magnus was split between his heirs. The importance of learned
societies not withstanding, their proceedings tend to be less influential
than the international science journals. Those therefore tend to be the
"flagship publications".

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