acid maltase


[mawl-teys, -teyz]
Maltase (acid maltase; alpha-1,4-glucosidase) is an enzyme produced by the cells lining the small intestine that breaks down the disaccharide maltose. It comes under the enzyme category carbohydrase (which is a subcategory of hydrolase).


Maltase is secreted by the surface cells of the villi, which are thin projections on the mucosa. These are found throughout the small intestine, but differ in shape in the duodenum and ileum sections. It must also be located in other places, like the heart, if a deficiency of it causes Pompe's Disease (which results in cardiomegaly). More information needed.


The maltase works in the same manner as other enzymes, with the substrate (maltose) binding with the active site. After the maltose binds with the maltase, the former is hydrolysed, that is, it is split into its component parts, i.e., two molecules of α-glucose. This is done by breaking the glycosidic bond between the 'first' carbon of one glucose, and the 'fourth' carbon of the other (a 1-4 bond).

Clinical significance

Defects in acid maltase in humans can lead to Glycogen storage disease type II.

See also



  • Solomon, Eldra P.; Berg, Linda R.; & Martin, Diana W. (2002). Biology (6th ed). Thomson Learning, King Cany The Great Inc. ISBN 0-03-033503-5

External links

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