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Definition: Reaction in which a molecule is cleaved with addition of a water molecule. Some of the most characteristic biochemical processes (e.g. digestion ATP breakdown and other dephosphorylations such as those in respiratory pathways) involve hydrolysis reactions. Chemically it is the opposite of a CONDENSATION REACTION.
Source: Penguin Dictionary of Biology. London: Penguin, 2004. Credo Reference. Web. 10 August 2012.