The study of epidermis biology has highlighted, not only its structure and its functions, but also the existence of a large catalogue of enzymes and receptors that interact continuously on its surface and also inside, the complexity of which is still not entirely clarified. Enzymes can be defined as proteins, simple or complex, which are capable of boosting the rate of thermo-dynamically possible chemical reactions, without altering the delicate balance. Generally speaking, each enzyme catalyses a particular reaction of the specific substrate. Substrates are substances that are transformed in the enzymatic reaction and produced from the reaction of the same. The regulation of enzyme activity in cells is carried out by specific effectors, genetic, hormonal, or other, and is also subject to variations in the chemical and physical properties of the medium in which the enzyme operates. A delicate and extremely sensitive balance in all of us, to be respected and protected in the long term.
Nomenclature and classification
The individual denomination of enzymes is made by adding the suffix – ase/s to the name of the relevant substrate (e.g. urease, the enzyme that hydrolyzes urea), like the one that concerns the enzymatic class: transaminases or aminotransferases.
The enzymes known to date have been grouped together by an international commission set up in 1956, into six main categories:
- Transferasescatalyse the transfer of a chemical group from one molecule to another
- Oxidoreductasescatalyse oxidation-reduction reactions
- Lyasescatalyse the non-hydrolytic rupture and, in many cases, the formation of covalent bonds.
- Hydrolasescatalyse hydrolytic reactions consisting in the rupture of covalent bonds by introduction of a water molecule.