Food and Enzymes
Enzymes are proteinaceous molecules that accelerate biological reactions by lowering the energy of activation. They are crucial to life in that they govern basic cellular metabolism. A disturbance in the balance of an enzyme’s substrate or product by loss or gain in activity can lead to disease, and consequently, many drugs (e.g., aspirin to control inflammation, statins to control cholesterol) are directed toward controlling enzymes. Enzymes are also important to the quality of the food we eat. Their activities control the color, flavor, and texture in both fresh and processed foods. We will explore the utilization of enzymes (natural and engineered through biotechnology) to control food quality and to generate novel food products.