Basically, they are responsible for maintain proper functioning of the body. Generally, they are proteins which play a catalytic role for particular molecules. The break down the food stuffs to become body nutrition. Naturally, they are essential for a sustainable environment for biological processes. They are used in food as well as non-food products in conversion of raw materials to finished products ready for consumption in the market. Being biodegradable, the enzymes are usable in various applications.
To begin with, they are used in various biotechnological processes. As analytical reagents in biotechnological processes, they bring two important properties which are sensitivity and specificity. Testing substances is one of the areas that have benefited a lot from their use as analytical reagents. Additionally, thermostable enzymes are used in bioactive detergents where their work is enabled in hot washes. Similarly, immobilized enzymes are utilized in various industrial applications.
They are also used in foods and drinks. Food and drink manufacturers have for a long time relied on enzymes. Some products like vinegar and yeast rely on yeast bacteria enzymes for production. Biological technology advancements have enabled scientists to obtain enzymes from their natural sources. This allows products to taste better and also manufactured uniformly. Additionally, they aid on cheap and faster production of various products. For instance, they hasten various products aging process, manage sugar levels and also make products stable in ready for market consumption. Enzymatic technological advances have also enabled production of sweeteners through its conversion of starch from wheat as well as corn to sugars. This has been successfully employed in some nations as an alternative to sugar production from sugarcane.
Leather industry is also another beneficiary of enzyme usage. Rather than using harmful substances, they are used to aid animal hide’s tanning procedure. They help in cleaning the hide as well as fur and fat removal. Finally, they assist in stabilization and preservation of the end leather products.
Plastics also use enzymes. Being an environmentally friendly option, it is a viable alternative to use of standard hydrocarbons. They successfully help in production of biodegradable plastics, a process that is relatively expensive for processes which use polymers from various plants like corn, wheat as well as bacteria. Later after the plastic are out of use, the enzymes helps in breaking them down. However, research is still being done in this area to allow production of cost-sustainable biodegradable plastic products.
Another area that has found large usage of enzymes is bio-fuel. They assist in production of bio-ethanol, a form of bio-fuel. This product is produced via an enzymatic process of converting plant starch to biodegradable based fuel products.