Faculty Advisor

Hanson, John

Area of Study

Science and Mathematics

Publication Date

Summer 2016


Hen egg white lysozyme and T4 lysozyme are two well-studied enzymes that have played an important role in helping us understand the structure and function of proteins. Both of these lysozymes function by breaking down cell walls. Although numerous studies on lysozyme catalysis have been conducted, detailed information on their substrate specificity has been lacking due to the heterogeneous nature of cell walls. The information we do have suggests that the T4 lysozyme cleaves only those oligosaccharides with an attached peptide chain while hen egg white lysozyme is less selective and will cleave oligosaccharides without peptide chains. I plan to synthesize several disaccharide substrates with different peptide side chains and gather kinetic data on the rate of binding and cleavage by the two lysozymes. Doing so will provide us with a better understanding of how enzymes differentiate between related substrates.


University of Puget Sound