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Investigation of factors affecting the enzyme Amylase.

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Reg No.8157423 Lisa Atkinson Ref No. 11402/W1 G.C.S.E Biology 01/12/00 Investigation of factors affecting the enzyme Amylase Introduction My investigation is to establish the factors affecting the activity of the enzyme Amylase. To do this I intend to conduct two separate experiments. One will be to show the affects on the enzyme by changing the pH. The other is to show the changes in the enzyme by altering the temperature. I predict that as the temperature increases, the reaction rate will also increase. When a particular temperature is reached I believe that the rate of reaction will dramatically decrease. I also think that this will also happen the further the pH is from pH7. If my theory is proven to be correct, it is most likely that there are optimum levels of temperature and acidity to obtain maximum efficiency in the chemical reaction. The purpose of these experiments is to obtain, if possible, the optimum settings to conduct these chemical reactions. Method I am going to investigate the effect that pH and temperature has on the activity of the enzyme amylase. Therefore I have developed two similar experiments (one for each factor I am investigating). ...read more.


Enzymes: Substances called catalysts speed up many chemical reactions. Catalysts called enzymes control the metabolic reactions in the body. Amylase is an enzyme; it is present in the digestive system of many animals. Amylase speeds up the breakdown of long chain starch molecules in smaller chains of maltose. Enzyme molecules have a very precise three-dimensional shape. This includes a 'dent', which is called the active site. It is exactly the right size and shape for enzyme's substrate to fit into (in the case of amylase this is starch). When a substrate molecules slots into the active site, the enzyme 'tweaks' the substrate molecule, pulling it out of shape and making it split into product molecules. High temperatures make enzymes inactive: this is because they are proteins, which are damaged by temperatures above about 40 degrees Celsius. Most enzymes work best at a pH of about pH7. This is also because they are proteins, which are damaged by very acidic or very alkaline conditions. Due to the enzyme's unique site it can only convert one kind of substrate molecule into one kind of product. ...read more.


I believe that the experiment was designed well but there were a few problems. The optimum temperature for the amylase was too high. I believe that all the results were skewed because the enzyme was not given enough time at each particular temperature to be fully affected before it was added to the starch. They were only left in the water bath for 10 minutes before starting the experiment. However, they should have been in the water bath for about 30 minutes so that the amylase had been completely affected by the temperature before the experiment was started. I decided to conduct the experiment at 10 degrees Celsius intervals instead of 5 degrees Celsius because that would have made the graph too big. When the results were collected, I plotted them on a rough graph to find the optimum temperature and then conducted the experiment at this temperature to ensure it was the optimum temperature. I also conducted all three experiments for each condition at the same time to save time. Additional work, which could be carried out, is to repeat the experiment using, a wider range of temperatures and pH levels, and a range of different starch solution concentrations or using different enzymes such as protease with a protein. ...read more.

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Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

3 star(s)

This report describes an investigation into the effect of both pH and temperature on the activity of the enzyme amylase. The writer covers all the main sections required in a piece of GCSE practical coursework although in a number of places, more detail is required to gain the higher grades. These are as follows:

[1] The introduction requires a more detailed approach to the chemistry of enzyme action with reference to the effect of pH and temperature on the shape of the active site.

[2] The method needs more detail regarding volumes and times.

[3] The control variables were discussed briefly but a number of these were omitted together with the effect they might have on the rate of reaction.

[4] The raw results were not recorded in the results table. This would have been useful in assessing the reliability of the data.

Overall, this report has considerable potential considering the quality of the data obtained in the laboratory. Attention to the 4 areas above would yield a high GCSE grade.

3 stars

Marked by teacher Ross Robertson 10/05/2013

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