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Differences Between Hormone and Enzyme

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Enzymes vs Hormones

To maintain, control, manage, and direct every physiological and anatomical function of the body, it requires the action of certain chemicals. From digesting the food eaten to helping in deep sleep, these chemicals called hormones and enzymes have a significant part in a human’s day - to - day - life. 

We are about to look at the 2 important categories of these bodily chemicals, namely enzymes and hormones, with examples. We will also understand the difference between hormone and enzyme, along with its features.


Enzymes vs Hormones

Enzymes are a type of catalyst that helps in processing a bodily reaction. This means enzymes do not change in their form or function but instead help to increase the rate of a particular reaction. Enzymes are produced in the Exocrine glands such as sweat and saliva. Trypsin, amylase, maltase are some of the other examples of enzymes. 

On the other hand, hormones are chemical messengers that trigger the reaction to occur. Hormones are varied in their form, and some of the prominent ones include steroids, amino acids, and even a few protein structures. Body hormones process the pituitary and thyroid glands from the endocrine glands. 

Hormones and enzymes are also present in plants and animals, but the secretion and purpose vary in both. One of the key features that differentiate hormones from enzymes lies in their chemical composition. Some of the other contrasting features in a hormone vs enzyme include the following. 

Enzymes can be described as a type of catalyst which helps in processing a bodily reaction. In other words, enzymes do not change in their form or function but it helps in increasing the rate of a particular reaction. Enzymes are produced in the Exocrine glands like sweat and saliva. Trypsin, amylase, and maltase are some other examples of enzymes. 

Hormones are chemical messengers which trigger the reactions to occur. Hormones are varied in their form, and some prominent hormones include the steroids, the amino acids, and some protein structures also.  Body hormones are known to process the pituitary and thyroid glands from the endocrine glands. 

Hormones and enzymes are known to be present in plants and animals, but the secretion and purpose of both are different. A key feature that differentiates hormones from the enzymes lies in their chemical composition. Some of the other contrasting features in a hormone vs enzyme include the following. 

The main influencing factor that affects hormones is Puberty, which causes lots of changes and alterations in a person unlike the Enzymes, which are not linked to any kind of age factor and they do not change or get affected.

The enzymes possess high molecular weight as compared to a hormone as they are macromolecules.  Morphogenesis or, more commonly known as the growth of certain body parts, is not facilitated through Enzymes. On the other hand,  hormones can regulate the same (for example - secondary sex characteristics of a human being). 

Hormones are chemicals that are released into the bloodstream in order to circulate the message to different organs of the body. This helps the organs and tissues of the body to function.

Reactions of Enzymes are based on their vitamin compounds and on various other inorganic prosthetic groups. Otherwise, they cannot function. Hormones, on the other hand, do not require any prosthetic groups. 

Hormones help in the communication between tissues. Hormones also play a major role in enabling certain activities such as tissue functions, digestion, sleep, metabolism, stress indications, respiration, excretion, reproduction, mood manipulations, growth and development, maintenance of body temperature, and thirst. These are found in multicellular organisms as they are produced by glands in multicellular organisms.


The Difference Between Enzymes and Hormones

The human body requires the action of chemicals in order to be able to control, maintain, manage and direct each and every physiological and anatomical function of the body. Hormones and enzymes are required for every organ to function well. From helping to aid in the process of digestion to getting good sleep, the various enzymes and hormones play a vital role.

  • As stated above, enzymes are biological catalysts, and they do change in their composition. They will help in increasing the pace of a reaction or function. Whereas, hormones are molecules or majorly protein contents that trigger a function to happen inside the body.

  • Hormones can diffuse inside a cell membrane, but enzymes cannot.  

  • Enzymes are created and act only on 1 particular site. However, hormones are flexible and can possibly be formed in more than 1 site. 

  • Enzymes act based on their vitamin compounds and other inorganic prosthetic groups, without which they cannot function. Yet, hormones do not require any prosthetic groups. 

  • Puberty (physical maturity in males and females) is the main influencing factor that affects hormones, causing changes and alterations in the person. Yet, enzymes are not linked to age factors and do not change or get affected.

  • Since enzymes are macromolecules, they possess high molecular weight as compared to a hormone. 

  • Morphogenesis (growth of certain body parts) is not facilitated through enzymes but hormones can regulate the same (for example - secondary sex characteristics of a human being). 

  • The blood carries hormones to a specific target organ. In the case of enzymes, they reach their site either through the support of ducts or through intracellular movements. 

  • The reaction time of enzymes is usually quick. But hormones are both slow (lag time) and fast depending on their purpose, target, and composition.

  • The chemical order of enzymes is not altered and hence reusable for other purposes. But the chemical make-up of hormones is modified after single-use and cannot be reused. 

  • External factors such as pH levels, temperature, air pressure, activators, substrate concentration, all affect enzymes, and their regulation. But hormones are rigid to these factors and remain constant to changes in the environment

  • Enzymes attack a substrate, and hormones attack the tissues or cells of the body. 


Conclusion

The rate of processing and the way a function is controlled are both important. Hormones and enzymes play their roles in the same and are equally significant to the proper development and functioning of the body. From triggering and processing to correctly handling and sending messages for a chemical reaction, enzymes and hormones are critical to human living and existence.

Last updated date: 26th Sep 2023
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FAQs on Differences Between Hormone and Enzyme

1. Describe Hormone?

A hormone is a chemical that is released into the bloodstreams so as to circulate the message to different organs of the body and is also known as “chemical messenger“. Hormones help organs and tissues of function according to the message.


Hormones enable communication between tissues and also help in activities such as tissue functions, digestion, sleep, metabolism, stress indications, respiration, excretion, reproduction, mood manipulations, growth and development, and in the maintenance of body temperature.

2. Mention some functions Of Enzymes.

Enzymes help in the breakdown and digestion of large nutrition molecules such as proteins, Carbohydrates, Fats into small molecules. Enzymes have vitamins that help them in any action performed. The production of enzymes takes place because of the stimulation process. Enzymes are responsible for increasing the rate of metabolic physiological processes and they help in metabolic reactions, as digestion, help in the breakdown of nutritional foods. The functions of Enzymes are essential.

3. Mention Two differences between Enzyme and Hormone?

There are many differences between Enzymes and Hormones, some of them being:

Enzymes are biological catalysts that change in their composition and they help in increasing the pace of a reaction or function. Hormones are molecules that trigger a function to happen inside the body.


Enzymes act only on one particular site whereas the Hormones are flexible and can be formed in more than one site. Hormones have the mechanism to diffuse inside a cell membrane, but enzymes do not have this mechanism.  


Enzymes and hormones majorly differ in their chemical composition. This chemical make-up changes after use in hormones but remains the same in enzymes.

4. What are some characteristics of Hormones?

Hormones are amino acid molecules that trigger specific reactions and send genetic messages. Hormones are chemical messengers and are secreted by living cells and tissues and organs called glands. Hormones are secreted in small quantities by the glands. Hormones are known to act upon certain cells, tissues, or organs which are called the target sites, and are generally slow in action, but are known to have long-lasting effects. Hormones are also present in plants and animals.

5. Where can I get Study Notes?

Biology is an important subject and it is important to be able to practice some of the important questions to be able to score well. The online portal, Vedantu.com offers important questions along with answers and other very helpful study material on Trigonometry, that have been formulated in a well-structured, well researched, and easy to understand manner. These study materials and solutions are all important and are very easily accessible from Vedantu and can be downloaded for free.

6. What are Enzymes?

Biological catalysts that do not change itself but act as a catalyst to a bodily reaction are called enzymes. Lipase is an example of the same.

7. What are the Sources of the Protease Enzyme?

Protease enzymes can be derived from food products such as meat, eggs, fish, poultry, nuts, and cheese.

8. Are There External Factors that Affect Hormones other Than Age?

Yes, apart from age, hormones are affected by external factors such as pregnancy (gestation), radiative environment, certain medical conditions, herbal supplements, prescribed drugs, and so on.


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