U or enzyme activity unit

A unit of enzyme activity adopted in 1964 by the International Union of Biochemistry,¹ having been defined by its Enzyme Commission in 1961.² One unit is the amount of enzyme activity which will catalyse the transformation of 1 micromole of the substrate per minute under standard conditions. The unit was not given a name. Symbol, U.

This unit was replaced in 1978 by the katal. 1 U corresponds to 16.67 nanokatals.

1. International Union of Biochemistry.
Enzyme Nomenclature: Recommendations 1964 of the International Union of Biochemistry.
Amsterdam: Elsevier, 1965.
See Chapter 4.

2. International Union of Biochemistry.
Report of the Commission on Enzymes.
Oxford: Pergamon Press, 1961.

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