• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Investigation on how the concentration of ethanol would affect the plasma membrane in a beetroot cell

Extracts from this document...


Investigation on how the concentration of ethanol would affect the plasma membrane in a beetroot cell Aim My aim is to find out how ethanol affects the plasma membrane of a beetroot cell. When the plasma membrane is broken, then the liquid in the cytoplasm come out. Because the liquid is purple, I can measure the intensity of the colour using a colorimeter. I can therefore know how much damage different concentration of ethanol would do to the plasma membrane of a beetroot cell. Planning The following apparatus are needed: A beetroot A cork borer A ruler A cutter 6 small cylinders 5 different concentration of ethanol (I have decided to use 80%, 60% 40% 20% 10% and distilled water) A syringe (10ml) 6 cuvettes A colorimeter Method: > Before doing the experiment, apron and safety specs should be wearied. ...read more.


> After the solution is ready, I need to pour the solution in at the same time so the result will not be bias. > Use a stop watch to time it, after it reached 2 minutes, shake the cylinder gently, so that all the colour of the solution in the cylinder should be evenly spread out. > Pour the solution from different cylinder into 6 different cuvettes. > Filled one of the cuvette with distilled water and use I as a control. > Put the control cubic in the colorimeter, and, then put the cuvette in once at a time, record the reading shown in the screen. I need to control some variables that would affect the intensity of the solution in order to it a fair experiment and therefore have a reliable result. The surface area of the slices of beetroot must be the same and I also need to make sure that they are not overlap during the experiment as this could also differ the surface area. ...read more.


So, the more concentrated the ethanol I used, the more damage (cut open) the plasma membrane, therefore the more the cytoplasm leaks out, making the colour more intense. The data plotted on the graph are all very close to the line of best fit drawn above, except one. The 'outlier' shows that if it is pure water we used (0% of ethanol), then the colour intensity will be zero, suggesting that there will be no damage do to the plasma membrane as the purple liquid inside the cytoplasm did not leak out. Ethanol is able to damage the plasma membrane of beetroot cell because I know that cell wall consists of 2 layer of phospholipid. It can be shown clearly in a fluid mosaic model: Ethanol is therefore able to dissolve the lipid on the plasma membrane, destroying it, causing the contents in the cytoplasm to leak out. ?? ?? ?? ?? Alice Lee ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Molecules & Cells section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Molecules & Cells essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    An investigation to examine the effects of temperature on membrane stability in beetroot, by ...

    3 star(s)

    As well as the above, the transport proteins within the bilayer will become denatured due to the excessive heat energy that will cause the molecules making up the protein to vibrate. This in turn will cause the molecules to move and so break some or all of the bonds, which are holding them together, so denaturing the protein.

  2. Marked by a teacher


    3 star(s)

    the polypeptide chains together (like hydrogen bonds, sulphur bridges and ionic bonds) can be disrupted very easily- this damages the vacuole and makes holes in the cell membrane, inducing more leakage of the betalain pigment. Observing the results, at 54�C to 67�C, the percentage light transmission tends to be either

  1. The Plasma Membrane

    Peripheral membrane proteins are not amphipathic and do not associate with non-polar regions of the phospholipids like the transmembrane proteins. They are located on the surface of the membrane where there are bound to be Polar regions of the integral membrane proteins.

  2. Permeability of Cell Membrane in Beetroot Cells

    and 80?, put into a cuvette and place each sample in front of the beaker it was taken from. 10. After 12 minutes take two samples from each of the beakers at 20?C, 40?C and 60?C and one sample from the beakers at 10?C and 80?C.


    2.5cm of beetroot wasn't accurately obtained from the cutting. This is an error because some of us we have a longer or shorter beetroot than specified, therefore we all obtain results that aren't concurrent. Get a more accurate means of cutting (if there's any), to ensure that we are

  2. Catalyse Investigation

    Once the apparatus had been reset and any air bubbles in the manometer fluid removed, a second and later third reading was taken by re-closing the clamp and measuring the time taken for sufficient gas to be released from the reaction to force the manometer fluid back up to the top mark.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work