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thiamine pyrophosphate:see coenzymecoenzyme
, any one of a group of relatively small organic molecules required for the catalytic function of certain enzymes. A coenzyme may either be attached by covalent bonds to a particular enzyme or exist freely in solution, but in either case it participates intimately in
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group of organic substances that are required in the diet of humans and animals for normal growth, maintenance of life, and normal reproduction. Vitamins act as catalysts; very often either the vitamins themselves are coenzymes, or they form integral parts of coenzymes.
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(also cocarboxylase), a coenzyme that participates in the enzymic transformations of α-keto acids and keto sugars; it is present in all animal and plant tissues, as well as in microorganisms.
The catalytic activity of thiamine pyrophosphate is associated with ionization of the carbon atom in the second position of the thiazole ring, to which a molecule of a substrate attaches itself. In industry, thiamine pyrophosphate is obtained from thiamine and pyrophosphoric acid. (For the medical use of thiamine pyrophosphate, SeeCOCARBOXYLASE.)