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An enzyme found in plants, molds, crustaceans, mollusks, and some bacteria which, in the presence of oxygen, catalyzes the oxidation of monophenols and polyphenols with the introduction of ‒OH groups and the formation of quinones.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(ortho-diphenoloxidase), a enzyme of the oxidoreductase class that is present in almost all animals and plants. Tyrosinase catalyzes the oxidation of the amino acid tyrosine into dopa during the biosynthesis of melanins. It takes part in the synthesis of epinephrine and in other metabolic processes. Hereditary disruption of tyrosinase activity or the absence of tyrosinase causes albinism. Tyrosinase has been found to be identical to polyphenoloxidase.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.