I am a master distiller at a distillery and I am about to make some whiskey. First adding corn, cooking it and releasing it's starches. After that, will add in some malt, packed with enzymes to break down those starch molecules into sugars. My question is, what happens to the enzyme after it breaks down the starch? can 1 enzyme breakdown multiple starch molecules?
Enzymes are a form of catalyst. Catalysts do not get consumed in a chemical reaction. I believe in reality, enzymes do degrade overtime and you need to replenish them overtime to keep the reaction efficient.
Can one (1) enzyme break down multiple starches? Sure.
I did not find specific literature on fermentation, but I found one (1) carbonic anhydrase in our tissues and bloodstream can hydrate 1,000,000 carbon dioxide molecules per second. So your enzyme probably has a similar magnitude of catalytic rate.
Berg JM, Tymoczko JL, Stryer L. Biochemistry. 5th edition. New York: W H Freeman; 2002. Section 8.1, Enzymes Are Powerful and Highly Specific Catalysts. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK22380/