News FocusMolecular Biology

'Dead' Enzymes Show Signs of Life

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Science  05 Apr 2013:
Vol. 340, Issue 6128, pp. 25-27
DOI: 10.1126/science.340.6128.25

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Biologists were taken aback about a decade ago when they began to realize that a large fraction of human enzymes appear to be duds. That realization was a shock because we can't live without the enzymes that promote biochemical reactions. So how could so many of these critical molecules have lost their key function? And why does the body keep on producing apparently inert proteins?