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Amylase Investigation

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Introduction

GCSE Biology Coursework-Plan "The enzyme salivary amylase, formerly known as ptyalin, initiates the break down of starch. This is the only chemical digestion that occurs in the mouth. The function of salivary amylase is to break the chemical bonds between some of the monosacchaides in the starches to reduce the long-chain polysaccharides to the disaccharide maltose." This quote is from Principles of Anatomy and Physiology. The equipment I will be using is as follows- One Beaker Two Syringes One Pipette Two Test Tubes One Boiling Tube One Spotting Tile One Kettle One Stop Watch One Thermometer I am going to test how quickly amylase breaks down starch at different temperatures. I am going to do this by extracting 10cm3 of starch and 10cm3 of Amylase using a syringe into two separate test tubes. I will then place the two test tubes in a beaker containing water at certain temperatures for five minutes. The temperatures will be 0, 10, 20, 40, 60, 80 and 100 degrees centigrade. To get to the higher temperatures I will use a kettle. I am leaving the test tubes in a beaker for five minutes to allow the starch and amylase to equal that of the water temperature. After five minutes I will mix the starch and amylase together into a boiling tube, and start the stop clock. ...read more.

Middle

19 90 Amylase Denatured Amylase Denatured 20 90 Amylase Denatured 21 90 Amylase Denatured I have done 21 experiments at the temperatures 0oC, 20oC, 40oC, 50oC, 60oC, 70oC and 90oC. I did each experiment three times and then worked out the average. I recorded the information by putting my results in table. Each experiment was done fairly by using 10cm3 of amylase and 10cm3 of starch each time. I had to recheck experiments 19, 20 and 21 (90oC) to be totally sure that the amylase was denatured. GCSE Biology- Analysing Evidence and Conclusions From my results I have found that amylase works best at around body temperature. Above or below body temperature amylase breaks down starch much slower. My graph shows that there is a distinctive pattern. Amylase takes a long time to break down starch at 0oC and then as the temperature increases amylase works quicker, as the graph shows. Then at 40oC (closest reading to body temperature) the graph reaches its lowest point, the graph then starts to gradually slope up. This is because amylase starts to work slower at higher temperatures. The trend of amylase seems to be that the lower the temperature gets the slower the amylase works. This is because at lower temperatures the movement of the amylase enzymes is much slower, so it therefore can't break down starch as quickly. ...read more.

Conclusion

I re-checked the experiment but it still ended up with the same result. I had to re-check the experiment at 90oC just to make sure that amylase had definitely become denatured. The experiment went well but it wasn't very reliable. The temperature of the water would drop when I would wait for the amylase and starch to get to the same temperature as the water. This could be overcome by insulating the beaker so it keeps the heat in better. I had enough readings to give me a good set of results that show how well amylase broke down starch at different temperatures. My results were strong enough to support my conclusion that Amylase is denatured above 70oC and works best at body temperature. Below body temperature it takes much longer for the amylase to brake down the starch. To improve the experiment I would need to insulate the beaker that contains the water, so it can keep the heat in. In the mouth amylase starts to break down starch immediately. So as a further experiment I could mix starch and amylase together straight away then leave the mixture in a beaker for five minutes, so they can get to the same temperature as the water. Then follow the same instructions as I did for my previous experiment. By doing this experiment the results may be more accurate or the results may be drastically different. Ben Kendall Page 1 ...read more.

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