Large group of over a thousand proteins (protein substances) that play a central role in the metabolism of all living organisms. They control or accelerate the majority of biochemical reactions such as growth, metabolism, stimulus uptake and transmission with corresponding reaction, immune system and digestion up to the copying of DNA information. In all plants, photosynthesis, among other things, is controlled by them. The term formed as an artificial word means sourdough or yeast and was introduced by the German physiologist Wilhelm F. Kühne (1837-1900), previously the term "ferment" was used. In addition to the corresponding microorganisms, enzymes are also crucially involved in a fermentation, for example by converting a starting material such as wine into vinegar.
Enzymes also play a significant role in winemaking, starting from fermentation to bottle ageing. Some are also produced artificially and used in winemaking and in combating harmful microorganisms. Enzymes involved in this context are, for example, chitinases, glucanases, invertase, lysozyme, oxidases (laccase, tyrosinase), pectinases, suberase, ureases and zymase. Oenological enzymes are also used to support the natural enzymes. See a complete list of all wine ingredients under total extract.