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Unformatted text preview: mitochondria. Such complexes provide greater efficiency and control in metabolic pathways. Some enzymes can only work when they have associate molecules, called coenzymes (non-protein organic molecules) or cofactors (mineral ions) present. Many of our vitamins function as coenzymes in electron transport pathways picking up the electrons removed from the substrate and carrying them (and their associated H + ) to the next reaction in the pathway in a series of oxidation-reduction reactions. Some of our minerals, notably zinc, copper and iron, function as cofactors. Cofactors in the active site attract electrons from the substrate promoting the reaction. Some metals may interfere with enzyme function. Mercury, for example, inhibits the function of many enzymes, partly by blocking the attachment of the needed cofactor....
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- Spring '10