Glucose Oxidase in Honey

Glucose Oxidase and Honey

Our third honey enzyme feature will look at glucose oxidase. Glucose oxidase catalyses the oxidation of glucose to hydrogen peroxide. It is present in honey because the honeybees synthesize the enzyme and deposit it into the honey, where it acts as a natural preservative.

What Does Glucose Oxidase Do?

Glucose oxidase catalyzes the reaction by which sugar creates hydrogen peroxide and gluconolactone. This reaction uses up the glucose (sugar) and protects against bacteria via the production of hydrogen peroxide.

Glucose Oxidase and Anti-microbial Properties

The most important thing about glucose oxidase, for us, is what it contributes to the anti-bacterial properties of honey. Honey has long been known as a salve for various wounds. This is due to its antibacterial activity, ability to maintain a moist wound condition, and high viscosity which helps to provide a protective barrier to prevent infection.

The antimicrobial activity in most honeys is due to the enzymatic production of hydrogen peroxide – which is facilitated by glucose oxidase.

Other Uses of Glucose Oxidase

Glucose oxidase, in some circles, is being used in home blood monitoring devices for diabetes management. The enzyme is thought to help devices track blood sugar levels, via bio-sensor technology. It’s also used by some as a home treatment for illness.

Glucose Oxidase Levels in Honey

Like other enzymes, the amount of glucose oxidase in raw honey can vary depending on the flowers and nectar that go into the honey.

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