The main difference between enzymatic and non enzymatic reactions is that in enzymatic reactions, the reaction is catalyzed in the presence of an enzyme, whereas in non-enzymatic reactions, the reaction is not catalyzed by an enzyme.
Chemical substances interact with each other in various ways to achieve stability. Many chemical reactions occur naturally in the world, including in biological systems. Some reactions require activation energy to proceed, which is the amount of energy needed to initiate the reaction and produce the end products. In fact, reactions with higher activation energy potential require more energy to overcome their activation energy barrier and may require specific conditions or a catalyst to proceed. Furthermore, catalysts increase the rate of a reaction by lowering its activation energy. We can also classify all reactions into two categories based on the type or nature of catalysts they use: enzymatic and non-enzymatic reactions.
Key Areas Covered
1. What are Enzymatic Reactions
– Definition, Nature of Reaction
2. What are Non Enzymatic Reactions
– Definition, Nature of Reaction
3. Difference Between Enzymatic and Non Enzymatic Reactions
– Comparison of Key Differences
Enzymatic Reactions, Non Enzymatic Reactions
What are Enzymatic Reactions
Enzymatic reactions are reactions that take place in the presence of a biological catalyst known as an enzyme. The use of an enzyme reduces the activation energy barrier and increases the rate of the reaction. The activation energy barrier is the energy barrier the reactants must overcome to produce the products. Moreover, the enzyme does not get used up in the reaction. It makes the reactions more feasible. Furthermore, the enzyme does not alter the chemical equilibrium between reactants and products. Additionally, enzymatic reactions are substrate specific.
These enzymes have specific sites on their surface known as active sites. The reactants combine with these active sites and cause the reaction. The substrate-bound together with the enzyme is known as the enzyme-substrate complex(ES). Moreover, at the end of the reaction, the products get released from the active site. This is the mechanism of the reaction. Furthermore, in the absence of an enzyme, most biological reactions are slow.
Some enzymes alter the confirmation of their substrate in order to facilitate the reaction to approach the transition state. The simplest model of the enzyme-substrate interaction is the lock and key model. Here, the substrate fixes precisely into the active site (the two shapes fit in well). However, in some cases, the binding of the substrate induces changes in both the enzyme and the substrate, leading to a process called induced fit. In this process, the confirmation of the substrate alters to resemble the transitional state, which allows for optimal catalysis.
What are Non Enzymatic Reactions
Non-enzymatic reactions are reactions that take place in the absence of an enzyme catalyst. They can be either biological or chemical reactions that occur without the involvement of an enzyme catalyst. In some cases, a non-enzyme catalyst may be present, while in others, there is no requirement for a catalyst to be present for the reaction to occur. These reactions typically have a lower activation energy barrier than enzyme-catalyzed reactions, making them easier to initiate and proceed. For example, the browning of food involves such a type of reaction. Browning of food is due to a series of chemical reactions taking place on the surface of the food, giving the food a brown color.
There are two types of browning, namely enzymatic and non-enzymatic browning. The non-enzymatic browning is the browning where the brown color pigment forms without an enzyme.
Difference Between Enzymatic and Non-Enzymatic Reactions
Enzymatic reactions are chemical reactions that are catalyzed by enzymes, while non-enzymatic reactions refer to chemical reactions that occur in the absence of an enzyme catalyst.
Nature of the Reaction
Enzymatic reactions are biological reactions, whereas non-enzymatic reactions are either biological or chemical reactions.
Involvement of Enzymes
While enzymatic reactions involve enzymes, non-enzymatic reactions do not involve enzymes.
There are many chemical reactions happening in the environment. Moreover, we can classify these reactions into two types depending on the involvement of the enzymes: enzymatic reactions and non-enzymatic reactions. The main difference between enzymatic and non enzymatic reactions is that in enzymatic reactions, the reaction is catalyzed in the presence of an enzyme, whereas in non-enzymatic reactions, the reaction is not catalyzed by an enzyme.
1. “The Central Role of Enzymes as Biological Catalysts.” National Library of Medicine.
2. “Enzymatic and Non-enzymatic browning of foods.” Science of Cooking.
1. “227 Steps in an Enzymatic Reaction-01” By OpenStax College – Anatomy & Physiology, Connexions Web site. Jun 19, 2013. (CC BY 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Barangan banana Indonesia” By Midori – Own work (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia