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An investigation to determine how increasing the concentration of inhibitor Copper Sulpahte will affect the amount of juice pr

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An investigation to determine how increasing the concentration of inhibitor Copper Sulpahte will affect the amount of juice produced by pectinase from a given mass of apple Hypothesis: I think that increasing the concentration of the inhibitor copper sulphate will decrease the ammount of juice produced by the enzyme pectinase. I expect this to happen because as copper sulphate is an inhibitor (non-competitive one), it will reduce the break down of pectin found in the middle lamellae between the cell walls in the apple pulp. Enzyme inhibitors are molecules that interact in some way with the enzyme to prevent it from working in the normal manner. In this case, it attaches to a part of the enzyme stucture, other than the active site. When this happens, the shape of the whole enzyme may change, altering the shape of the active site. This prevents enzyme substrate complexes formation, which means the enzyme can no longer function as it should. ...read more.


For an enzyme to catalyse a reaction, the enzyme molecule and the substrate molecule need to meet and join together by means of temporary bond. The combination of an enzyme with its substrate is known as the enzyme-substrate complex. This formation is explained by two theories. The Lock and Key hypothesis suggests that the substrate fits into the active site like a "lock and key" where the substrate is the lock and the enzyme is the key. The Induced Fit theory suggests that the shape of the active site changes shape when the substrate molecule attaches to it. Enzymes are highly affected by temperature and pH. Therefore, how fast the enzyme can catalyze or work on the chemical reaction depends on factors like temperature and pH. PECTINASE (the enzyme): Pectinase is an enzyme that breaks up pectin, the substrate, in plants. Pectinases are a mixture of enzymes which are widley used in the fruit industry to extract, clarify and modify fruit juices. ...read more.


This is the chemical structure of pectin. Under acidic condition, pectin forms a gel, and it can be used as an edible thickening agent in processed foods. This effect is used for making jams and jellies. Copper Sulpahte (the inhibitor): Copper sulpahte is also known as Copper(II) sulfate or blue vitriol (CuSO4). It is the most common copper salt, made by the action of sulfuric acid on the base copper(II) oxide. The anhydrous form is a pale green or gray-white powder, while the hydrated form is bright blue. The archaic name for copper(II) sulfate was cupric sulfate. Copper sulphate is an inhibitor of pectinase for the following reason. Enzymes, such as pectinase contain several amino acids with negatively charged residues. Copper, with it's positive charge, would like to bind to these negative charges if it can gain access to them. That can upset the catalytic properties of an enzyme in a number of ways. For example, if the negatively charged residue participates in the chemical mechanism of catalysis, then having Cu bound is going to interfere with activity. ...read more.

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Although not complete this is a good start to an investigation on the effect of Copper Sulphate on the enzyme Pectinase.

The scientific theory is well structured and gives appropriate detail on all aspects needed to carry out an investigation in this area.

Unfortunately the investigation is incomplete and does not include any of the method / data / analysis / evaluation or conclusion; thus making it a good essay on this topic, rather than an investigation.

Marked by teacher Jon Borrell 18/07/2013

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