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The effect of bead size on the activity of immobilised Yeast enzymes.

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The effect of bead size on the activity of immobilised Yeast enzymes. Introduction; Enzymes serve as biological catalysts and as a result increase the number of reactions occurring within in a set period of time. To a similar effect yeast can be used to increase the rate of a reaction. It is possible to immobilise yeast using a solution such as Sodium alginate. This allows several usage's from the same enzyme batch and it also increases it's own stability. This technique is often seen in use in industry, one example of this is that seen in the textile industry. Yeast uses Sucrose as a form of energy, and can then hydrolyse it internally and brings out its constituent monosacharides. Using this, it is possible to investigate whether the size of the yeast beads affects the reaction, which takes place. In theory, the greater the surface area of the beads, the slower the rate of reaction as less of the Yeast selectively permeable membrane are outward facing in order to further the reaction. Consequently the smaller the bead the faster the Sucrose is Hydrolysed yielding more of it's constituent monosacharides. ...read more.


This is possible to test by varying the bead surface area, and straining Sucrose through them in order to observe whether this hypothesis is provable. The plan continued; The apparatus chosen is best suited to the needs of the experiment. The syringes allow a simple method of varying bead size. The calcium chloride solution allows beads to be formed quickly. Distilled water prevents any extra-chemicular interference. The Glucose test strips provide swift and accurate readings: muslin is used to prevent clogging in the straining process, no beads can block or travel through the bottom of the test syringe. The beakers used are neither unnecessarily small nor excessively large, and are suited to their intended use. Meticulous attention to safety should be observed at all times. Each chemical is to be kept separately at all times and also clearly labelled. The sodium alginate can be irritant to the skin and appropriate warnings should be included. Non of the chemicals should be handled directly and all glassware should be kept in a sensible location. Unused solution should be kept away from the test area and eventually disposed of with all the equipment cleaned with extra care. ...read more.


Another point is that the apparatus should also be cleaned, so that none of it directly used and comes in contact with the second test. Once the yeast has been immobilised, there are different ways of conducting the experiment in order to achieve the desired results. The other possibility, which I explored was to place the beads in a petris dish and add the sucrose then however this would have been less efficient, as each would have to be tested simultaneously, so no extra hydrolysis time could have been given. In addition the solutions would have been reacting during testing, reducing result accuracy and configuration. Diagram of Setup; From the evidence collated the results should incline towards the greater Glucose yield being towards the smaller beads owing to the superior surface area exposing larger surface of the selectively permeable membrane to be able to obtain the Sucrose. Throughout the experiment safety guidelines should be followed at all times. Goggles should be worn at all times and chemicals mixed individually. Although the reactions are not volatile by nature, all chemicals should be handled cautiously using a spatula however if any skin contact is made it should be washed off immediately using water. Gurvinder Thind Biology Coursework 12G_Mr Richards. ...read more.

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