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prosthetic group and coenzymes?

Discussion in 'MCAT Study Question Q&A' started by m25, 09.20.14.

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  1. m25

    m25

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    What is the difference between prosthetic group and coenzyme?
    My understanding is that prosthetic group binds tightly(covalently) to enzyme on active site, while coenzymes binds loosely to allosteric sites on enzyme? Is this right?
     
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  3. StIGMA

    StIGMA Doctor Professor 7+ Year Member

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    No that is not correct-

    Cofactors include prosthetic groups (covalently bound or "tightly" ie: stably associated with a protein) AND coenzymes (which is more easily removed than a prosthetic group would be ie: less tightly bound).

    Cofactors do not bind allosteric sites; rather, they generally form part of the active site. An allosteric site is a separate site on a protein where an allosteric effector (other molecule) could bind and modify the function of the protein eg: by changing the conformation of the protein and thereby opening/closing the active site. A prosthetic group and coenzyme both bind to active sites and are both generally non-covalent.
     
    Last edited: 09.20.14
  4. m25

    m25

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    Ah, so prosthetic group and coenzyme both bind to active site, and prosthetic groups tend to bind covalently while coenzymes tend to bind noncovalently? Also, your last sentence seems to be cut off mid-sentence...
     
  5. StIGMA

    StIGMA Doctor Professor 7+ Year Member

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    Yes, they bind at/near the active site (they function at the active site). No- they are both generally non-covalent interactions.

    I fixed the last sentence.
     

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