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Find out how temperature affects the breakdown of starch by the enzyme Amylase.

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Introduction

G.C.S.E. Coursework By Richard Di Franco AIM: To find out how temperature affects the breakdown of starch by the enzyme Amylase. APPARATUS 2 cm cubed of amylase. 4 cm cubed of starch. Prediction I predict that when the starch amylase is first heated up, it will take longer to react. At a low temperature the enzymes do not work as well as they should. This is because they need to collide to create a reaction. Therefore, if the temperature is low the molecules are not travelling round fast enough to result in a collision, which is needed to generate the reaction. The optimum temperature to achieve the best results is 30 to 40 degrees centigrade. At this temperature, the reaction created by collisions generated by the speed of the molecules is at the maximum or most efficient level. Once the temperature is raised above this, the cells start to get damaged. This is shown by the collision theory. This states that "increasing the temperature can have surprisingly large effects on the rate of reaction". ...read more.

Middle

* Keep the water the same temperature throughout the test. * Measure the solutions out accurately. * Only two drops of iodine in each single part of the tray. * Test the solutions dead on the 1/2 minute times. Results Evaluation. I think that the project went well, however it was hard to keep a constant temperature. We had to insulate the beaker with paper towels so the temperature stayed constant. Apart from this, the test went well. I think the reliability of the results could be inaccurate. This is due to the difficulties in accurately setting the time, testing the solution to check if a reaction had occurred and the need to keep a constant temperature. This is displayed by the odd plotted point on the graph. I did keep to my aim, but the main problem was that there were insufficient water baths to go round. The water baths help to keep the water at a constant temperature, which will improve the accuracy of the testing. In order to overcome this, it was decided to insulate the beaker with paper towels. ...read more.

Conclusion

Ultimately, when the temperature was at 60 degrees, the amylase appeared to take an age to digest the starch. The amylase worked best around the temperature of 30 because it was at its peak on the graph. This all comes down to the collision theory; it states that for a chemical reaction to occur, relevant particles must collide with sufficient energy to cause molecular rearrangement. In this case the enzyme had the most energy when at the temperature range of 30-40 degrees. It takes some time to for the molecules to react, this is because until the temperature is increased, the speed required to create a collision has not reached its most effective level. They are travelling at a slow pace with no conviction, so they may not crash into each other. If you put too much heat into the reaction, you could mutate or permanently damage the cell so it might not do its job properly. In conclusion, according to the test results, 30-40 degrees is the best temperature level because it is not too cold (so it does not work properly) and it is not too hot (so it does not damage the cell) . ...read more.

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