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Injectable Enzyme Medications

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Evolution of Injectable Enzyme Medications

Injectable enzyme medications are a class of medicines that use tiny proteins (called enzymes) used by living organisms to break down other substances. Enzymes are used by many types of organisms, ranging from bacteria all the way to human beings. They each have a particular job, such as digesting food, metabolizing medications, and absorbing vitamins and nutrients. Scientists have long studied these proteins to understand bodily functions, and have deciphered the chemical structure of many particular enzyme proteins. Other scientists were then able to manufacture some of these same proteins in a lab and make them into an injectable form. This technology has allowed patients with enzyme deficiencies to regain missing functions. Recently, doctors and pharmacists started looking at using naturally-occurring enzymes for jobs other than their native function. The streptokinase enzyme has been harnessed and used to break down blood clots in important blood vessels, such as to treat stroke patients. Hyaluronidase is an enzyme that breaks down hyaluronic acid outside cells and can now be used to increase the absorption of other medications, including insulin.

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