Among the enzymes already extracted from fungi are invertases (yeasts, moulds, &c.), which split cane-sugar and other complex sugars with hydrolysis into simpler sugars such as dextrose and levulose; diastases, which convert starches into sugars (Aspergillus, &c.); cytases, which dissolve cellulose similarly (Botrytis, &c.); peptases, using the term as a general one for all enzymes which convert proteids into peptones and other bodies (Penicillium, &c.); lipases, which break up fatty oils (Empusa, Phycomyces, &c.); oxydases, which bring about the oxidations and changes of colour observed in Boletus, and zymase, extracted by Buchner from yeast, which brings about the conversion of sugar into alcohol and carbondioxide.
Hydrates, such as starches and sugars; fats; proteids, such as meat and eggs; salts; and last, but not least, water.
It may be prepared by the lactic fermentation of starches, sugars, gums, &c., the sugar being dissolved in water and acidified by a small quantity of tartaric acid and then fermented by the addition of sour milk, with a little putrid cheese.
Sugars, Starches, Gums, Gelatin, &c. - Although these and allied bodies are used in various ways as remedies, their action is for the most part purely mechanical or dietetic.
Glycogen is formed by the action of a ferment on the carbohydrates - the starches being converted into sugars.