Title

Biochemistry Students' Ideas about how an Enzyme interacts with a Substrate

Department

Chemistry & Biochemistry

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

7-1-2015

Abstract

Enzyme-substrate interactions are a fundamental concept of biochemistry that is built upon throughout multiple biochemistry courses. Central to understanding enzyme-substrate interactions is specific knowledge of exactly how an enzyme and substrate interact. Within this narrower topic, students must understand the various binding sites on an enzyme and be able to reason from simplistic lock and key or induced fit models to the more complex energetics model of transition state theory. Learning to understand these many facets of enzyme-substrate interactions and reasoning from multiple models present challenges where students incorrectly make connections between concepts or make no connection at all. This study investigated biochemistry students' understanding of enzyme-substrate interactions through the use of clinical interviews and a national administration (N = 707) of the Enzyme–Substrate Interactions Concept Inventory. Findings include misconceptions regarding the nature of enzyme-substrate interactions, naïve ideas about the active site, a lack of energetically driven interactions, and an incomplete understanding of the specificity pocket.

Journal

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education

Journal ISSN

1539-3429

Volume

43

Issue

4

First Page

213

Last Page

222

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

10.1002/bmb.20868