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What is an enzyme
It is a protein with catalytic activity. An enzyme is a biological catalyst able to accelerate several folds a chemical reaction.
All enzymes are proteins, but not all proteins are enzymes.
Enzymes are produced by cells, but enzymes are not capable of reproduction.
Enzymes are, therefore, not "alive", but are biologically active under certain conditions of pH, temperature, medium composition, etc.
Enzymes are active under relatively mild reaction conditions.
Enzymes are not infectious to individuals or polluting the environment.

Contrary to inorganic catalysts (i.e., heavy metals) enzymes are extremely specific, which means that each enzyme can break or form a single type of chemical bond in a given chemical compound or structure. Furthermore, enzyme-catalyzed reactions take place under mild conditions of temperature (30-70°C), pH (between pH 4.5 and 9), pressure (atmospheric), etc., and are to be viewed as eco-compatible, as they do not generate polluting residues or toxic by-products.
There are instances where enzymes can be employed to catalyze some reactions even at extreme temperatures (beyond 100°C, as is the case for high-temperature amylases ) or of pH (up to pH 12, such as with alkaline proteases used in leather applications).

There are numerous applications of enzymes, in the fields of industrial chemistry and food processing, amongst which the following should be mentioned:
Detergents:
Proteases for the elimination of protein stains and to enhance the action of chemical surfactants; lipases to hydrolyze triglycerides present in vegetable or animal fats; amylases for the degradation of carbohydrates; cellulases for the defibrillation of fabrics made of cellulosic fibers in order to give cleaner surfaces of knits or garments, better dye brightness, softer hand feel, etc.
Textile:
Pectin lyase for bioscouring of raw cotton; amylases for desizing; cellulases for biopolishing and for stonewashing; catalase for the elimination of hydrogen peroxide; proteases for treatment of silk and wool; peroxidase and laccase for dye oxidation.
Pulp & Paper:
Xylanase for "bleach boosting" to decrease chlorine use in pulp bleaching; lipases for "pitch control"; amylases in preparation of starch coating; cellulase for drainage improvement, process aid in cellulose fiber refining and as an aid in de-inking; etc.
Leather:
Proteases in beamhouse steps of skin and hides tanning; lipases for degreasing.
Starch & alcohol
Various amylases for the production of glucose and fructose syrups, and their derivatives of alcoholic fermentation.
Protein derivatives
Various types of proteases to produce protein hydrolyzates used in food and animal feed.
Oils and fats
Lipases for the modification of triglycerides and in the production of soja emulsifiers.
Animal feed production
Several enzymes for carbohydrate degradation (e.g., cellulases and hemicellulases) to improve digestibility and increase the conversion index of feeds for monogastric production animals, or to decrease the amount of inorganic phosphorous in pig manure (fitase).
Chemical, dietetic and pharmaceutical products
Stereospecific synthesis of chemical compounds (pharmaceutical active principles and their intermediaries) or dietetic products (aspartame), diagnostics for clinical chemistry, etc.
Oil Drilling
As "breaker technology" to specifically degrade natural polymers used as mud viscosifiers in oil well drilling.
Lamberti offers a complete product line of enzyme formulations for textile and leather applications, thanks to an expert group of dedicated researchers and a biotechnology laboratory.