I notice many wikipedia articles, courses, pathway sites use a different abbreviation for the same enzyme. Eg: Wikipedia lists the abbreviation of phosphoglycerate mutase as PGM, whilst wikipaths lists it as PGAM in the glycolysis pathway. Then there's enzymes like glyceraldehyde 3 phosphate abbreviated either as GAPDH or G3PDH. This has led to many confusions, particularly when the enzyme abbreviation is completely different to the gene abbreviation, eg: protein kinase A (PKA).

For the official names of genes, I'm using genenames.org. I thought it might be common practice to abbreviate an enzyme with its gene abbreviation, but I see this is problematic due to many enzymes being encoded by multiple subunits and genes from different locations.

Is there a site, or a way, to unambiguously know the correct, and most widely recognized, official name/abbreviation for an enzyme, like there is for genes?

  • $\begingroup$ The fundamental problem here is that enzymes are classified by the reaction they catalyze, not by gene or protein entity. Two enzymes that catalyze the same reaction that are not related from an evolutionary point of view are given the same EC number. Have a look at the mess of EC (alcohol dehydrogenase) $\endgroup$ – user1136 Aug 11 '15 at 10:44

No, not that I have ever seen. Classically, the Enzyme Commission (E.C.) identifiers are the only way to be certain that two (or more) abbreviations or acronyms are all referring to the same enzyme activity. Sometimes, when the situation becomes very complicated interested parties will co-author a proposed new naming convention within their subfield. Some journals may require specific abbreviations, but otherwise authors are free to use whatever nomenclature they like.


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