B7. Meaning of Kinetic Constants
It is important to get a "gutlevel" understanding of the significance of the rate constants. Here they are:

K_{m}: The Michaelis constant with units of molarity (M), is operationally defined as the substrate concentration at which the initial velocity is half of V_{max}. It is equal to the dissociation constant of E and S only in if E, S and ES are in rapid equilibrium. It can be thought of as an "effective" Kd in other cases.

k_{cat}: The catalytic rate constants, with units of s^{1} is often called the turnover number. It is a measure of how many bound substrate molecules turnover or form product in 1 second. This is evident from equation v_{0} = k_{cat}[ES]

k_{cat}/K_{m}: Under condition when [S] << K_{m}, the MichaelisMenten equation becomes v_{0} = (k_{cat}/K_{M})[E_{0}][S]. This really describes a biomolecular rate constant, with units of M^{1}s^{1}, for conversion of free substrate to product. Some enzyme have k_{cat}/K_{m} values around 10^{8}, indicating that they are diffusion controlled. That implies that the reaction is essentially done as soon as the enzyme and substrate collide. The constant kcat/Km is also referred to as the specificity constant in that it describes how well an enzyme can differentiate between two different competing substrates. (We will show this mathematically in the next chapter.)
Km values  
enzyme  substrate  Km (mM) 
catalase  H_{2}O_{2}  25 
hexokinase (brain)  ATP  0.4 
DGlucose  0.05  
DFructose  1.5  
carbonic anhydrase  HCO_{3}^{}  9 
chymotrypsin  glycyltyrosinylglycine  108 
Nbenzoyltyrosinamide  2.5  
bgalactosidase  Dlactose  4.0 
threonine dehydratase  LThr  5.0 
kcat values  
enzyme  substrate  k_{cat} (s^{1}) 
catalase  H_{2}O_{2}  40,000,000 
carbonic anhydrase  HCO_{3}^{}  400,000 
acetylcholinesterase  acetylcholine  140,000 
blactamase  benzylpenicillin  2,000 
fumarase  fumarate  800 
RecA protein (ATPase)  ATP  0.4 
Enzymes with kcat/Km values close to diffusion controlled (10^{8}  10^{9} M^{1}s^{1})  
enzyme  substrate  kcat (s^{1})  Km (M)  kcat/Km (M^{1}s^{1}) 
acetylcholinesterase  acetylcholine  1.4 x 10^{4}  9 x 10^{5}  1.6 x 10^{8} 
carbonic anhydrase  CO_{2}  1 x 10^{6}  1.2 x 10^{2}  8.3 x 10^{7} 
HCO_{3}^{}  4 x 10^{5}  2.6 x 10^{2}  1.5 x 10^{7}  
catalase  H_{2}O_{2}  4 x 10^{7}  1.1  4 x 10^{7} 
crotonase  crotonylCoA  5.7 x 10^{3}  2 x 10^{5}  2.8 x 10^{8} 
fumarase  fumarate  8 x 10^{2}  5 x 10^{6}  1.6 x 10^{8} 
malate  9 x 10^{2}  2.5 x 10^{5}  3.6 x 10^{7}  
triose phosphate isomeraser  glyceraldehyde3P  4.3 x 10^{3}  4.7 x 10^{4}  2.4 x 10^{8} 
blactamase  benzylpenicillin  2.0 x 10^{3}  2 x 10^{4}  1 x 10^{8} 