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    It's something I've always wondered (well, for a long time, anyway): What is the point of all the non-contact amino acids in an enzyme? That is, enzymes as essentially long strings of amino acids that are wrapped up in a particular way, but the amino acids are always very specific, and I think (tho I'm not completely sure) that if you replace even one, the enzyme won't function properly. So there must be some importance to the amino acids, beyond just holding everything together. What is it? :curious:
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    (Original post by Treblebee)
    It's something I've always wondered (well, for a long time, anyway): What is the point of all the non-contact amino acids in an enzyme? That is, enzymes as essentially long strings of amino acids that are wrapped up in a particular way, but the amino acids are always very specific, and I think (tho I'm not completely sure) that if you replace even one, the enzyme won't function properly. So there must be some importance to the amino acids, beyond just holding everything together. What is it? :curious:
    Lots of things determine the 3D structure of a protein, such as how many hydrophobic R groups are present, the angles of the bonds between amino acids, the number of H-bonds, covalent bonds, ionic bonds and other stuff I've probably forgotten. The sequence of amino acids is important because the unique combination of the amino acid properties causes the polypeptide to fold up into a unique shape, and it's this unique shape that gives an enzyme its properties. As you said, change just one of these amino acids and the enzyme will lose its function. So to answer your question, it is the "non-contact" amino acids that allow an active site to keep its unique shape, and thus allow the enzyme to work in the first place!
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    (Original post by Treblebee)
    It's something I've always wondered (well, for a long time, anyway): What is the point of all the non-contact amino acids in an enzyme? That is, enzymes as essentially long strings of amino acids that are wrapped up in a particular way, but the amino acids are always very specific, and I think (tho I'm not completely sure) that if you replace even one, the enzyme won't function properly. So there must be some importance to the amino acids, beyond just holding everything together. What is it? :curious:
    Remember, degenerate code is a thing. So, even if a mutation occurs, the new codon could still code for the same amino acid.
 
 
 
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