Ian A. York iayork at panix.com
Sun Apr 1 13:04:17 EST 2001

In article <tceovnh75jgea9 at corp.supernews.co.uk>,
Poster Ex \(CH\) <chris2048 at hotmail.com> wrote:
>Hmm, but the argument that my friend proposed is,
>that enzymes, as catalysts, cannot break down material themselves,
>but require another chemical, such as acid, to complete the job...

This is completely wrong; that's not what catalyst means.

>So the question is, not does acid contribute to the breakdown of protein,
>but is it the ONLY ingredient that does this,
>or do enzymes do the actual process w/o the "help" of acid...

Pepsin does the digestion without the help of acid: the role of acid is to 
activate it.

Pepsin might be a confusing example: if it helps clarify things, there are 
many, many other digestive enzymes which do not requre acid for activation 
or function.  

Note followups again.

    Ian York   (iayork at panix.com)  <http://www.panix.com/~iayork/>
    "-but as he was a York, I am rather inclined to suppose him a
     very respectable Man." -Jane Austen, The History of England

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