Figure 2-53. Enzymes cannot change the equilibrium point for reactions.

Figure 2-53Enzymes cannot change the equilibrium point for reactions

Enzymes, like all catalysts, speed up the forward and backward rates of a reaction by the same factor. Therefore, for both the catalyzed and the uncatalyzed reactions shown here, the number of molecules undergoing the transition X → Y is equal to the number of molecules undergoing the transition Y → X when the ratio of Y molecules to X molecules is 3.5 to 1. In other words, the two reactions reach equilibrium at exactly the same point.

From: Catalysis and the Use of Energy by Cells

Cover of Molecular Biology of the Cell
Molecular Biology of the Cell. 4th edition.
Alberts B, Johnson A, Lewis J, et al.
New York: Garland Science; 2002.
Copyright © 2002, Bruce Alberts, Alexander Johnson, Julian Lewis, Martin Raff, Keith Roberts, and Peter Walter; Copyright © 1983, 1989, 1994, Bruce Alberts, Dennis Bray, Julian Lewis, Martin Raff, Keith Roberts, and James D. Watson .

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