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When enzymes interact with substrates (i.e. a small ADP molecule and the much larger ATP synthase), does quantum mechanics play a significant role? Or can the interactions be relatively accurately be understood using simply classical mechanics principles?

For example, considering a free body diagram when I insert a key into a lock, the interactions between the key and the lock can be accurately modeled using simply classical mechanics (such as friction, normal forces, etc).

However, since the scale of proteins and molecules are much smaller, could the binding of ADP to ATP synthase still be accurately modeled using classical mechanics (i.e. electrostatic forces, physical contact forces, etc.)? Or are quantum principles very significant?

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  • $\begingroup$ Related. $\endgroup$ – canadianer Oct 14 '19 at 9:14
  • $\begingroup$ I think, this paper can help you understand current state of Quantum Biology and related issues. $\endgroup$ – Dexter Oct 14 '19 at 12:20
  • $\begingroup$ This question may get more attention on the new Materials Modeling SE $\endgroup$ – Tyberius May 18 '20 at 16:48

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