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Analysing the Effectiveness of Amylase at Varied Temperatures

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Introduction

GCSE Biology Analysing the Effectiveness of Amylase at Varied Temperatures Prepared by: Scott Bayfield Contents Planning Page 3 Prediction Page 3 Equipment list Page 4 Health and safety issues Page 4 Variables Page 4 Method Page 5 Results Page 6 Analysis Page 6 Test Evaluation Page 7 Planning The aim of this experiment is to investigate how effectively the enzyme amylase breaks down starch into glucose, at different temperatures, and therefore to find the optimum temperature of amylase. Amylase is an enzyme found in various places throughout the body however, mostly in the saliva and the pancreas. It has an effect on the starch we consume in food and acts by breaking it down into glucose as the following diagram explains: The diagram shows how the enzyme and substrate (starch) fit together exactly like a lock and key. Starch in its entirety is a large insoluble chain of identical sugar molecules, however, when starch comes into contact with amylase it is broken down into individual/smaller soluble molecules and converted into glucose. Prediction I predict that the amylase would break down the starch most effectively at 40oC, and with decreasing efficiency towards 0oC, at which time the amylase would be unable to break down the starch at all.

Middle

Once you are satisfied that the solution has definitely changed colour you should then regard this an end point for the experiment Note: You will find that the solution will not change colour at all temperatures. Therefore it is important to establish a suitable time scale where you can confidently state that no colour change can be expected. During this experiment the end point has been set at 600 seconds. Results The following table of results states the length of time it took for the amylase to work on the starch solution. As previously mentioned, some of my results were obtained via other pupils who had carried out the same experiment under exactly the same conditions. Temperature oc Time taken for starch to break down (sec's.) Test 1* Test 2 Test 3 Average time 0oc 600 600 600 600 20oc 500 550 570 540 30oc 330 300 450 360 40oc 330 300 300 310 50oc 180** 300 600 450 60oc Denatured Denatured Denatured Denatured 70oc Denatured Denatured Denatured Denatured * Results from my experiment ** Anomalous result omitted from averages Analysis The graph shows that from the starting temperature of 0?C the graph line rose quite steadily until it reached 20?C where the line begins to rise much more considerably.

Conclusion

* Water bath temperature - the temperature of the water appeared to fluctuate slightly throughout the experiment and didn't constantly remain at the correct temperature * Determining the colour change - it wasn't always easy to determine weather or not the solution had made the transition between blue/black and brown/black. This was mainly due to the colour similarities and that the colour didn't always make an immediate change * The speed in which the amylase/starch solution was transferred between the water bath and the spotting tile In an effort to ensure accurate results are constantly obtained, an ideal solution would have been to automate the entire process, with a sample of the mixture being automatically added to the iodine whilst keeping the solution at an unchanged temperature. This would also overcome the inaccuracies relative to the timing of the experiment, which will rarely be exact if an individual is expected to monitor the stop clock and give perfect results. Overall the accuracy of the results are good enough to give a sensible conclusion. However, if the experiment had been conducted under more strict conditions and with more advanced instruments, the conclusion would not have been different although the individual test results might have been more accurate and the graph might have looked slightly different. 2

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