|MadSci Network: Biochemistry|
The majority of the [cloth] stains that needs to be removed by detergents are proteins, lipids and starch. In order to obtain proper removal of such stains proteases are used to degrade the proteins; lipases are used to degrade the lipid [fat = triglycerides] and amylases are used to degrade starch. All these enzymes function in solution at temperatures up to 60C and degrade the substrates [protein, lipid and starch]. By degrading the substrate they become smaller in size and thereby [usually] better soluble in water and are thereby easily removed from the cloth
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