Check the effect of increasing concentration of acid and alcohol on the amount of denaturation of the albumen protein.

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Aim: The aim of my experiment is to check the effect of increasing concentration of acid and alcohol on the amount of denaturation of the albumen protein.

I will be carrying out my experiment by using the below conditions as variables.

  1. Concentration of acid
  2. Concentration of alcohol
  3. Temperature

For this experiment to work there are certain factors that have to be controlled like temperature and amount of egg white to be added. In all the experiments the amount of egg white used will be 10ml and the temperature maintained will be room temperature. One air conditioner will be left on all throughout the day to make sure the temperature remains the same. If there is an increase in the temperature the protein will denature faster thus the temperature must be maintained.

The amount of egg white to be added is 10 ml. This is done by accurately measuring it by first putting the egg white is a measuring cylinder of 10 ml capacity and then adding it to the test tubes.

Equipment/ Apparatus

Round Bottom Flasks. These will be required after the acid and alcohol solutions are prepared. These are better suited than beakers or other flasks (conical) because these have a bung that prevents the alcohol and acid to vapourise and escape. This can also be done using a beaker with a lid but since these flasks come with stoppers of perfect size to plug the hole, there is less chance of this happening.

Pipette. The pipette is used to add the alcohol and the acid into the measuring cylinders.

Measuring Cylinders. These will be used to measure the amount of water added to the acid and the alcohol to adjust the concentrations. The measuring cylinders come in different volume ranges and are thus more helpful.

Gloves. This is more of a safety feature more than anything. Even if by accident the acid were to drop onto my hands, there would be no damage such as itching or burning of the skin.

Glass rods. To stir the albumen for easy addition.

Rubber Bungs. These are to be used once the alcohol and acid solutions are added to the albumen to prevent atmospheric oxygen from reaction with the mixture.

Colorimeter. For some of the readings the length of the coagulated protein formed cannot be easily measured because the denaturation is not complete. Therefore the better way would be to pass light through the suspension and then check the intensity of light that passes through. This is preferred to a spectrophotometer. The operation of a spectrophotometer is basically to illuminate the sample with white light and to calculate the amount of light that is reflected by the sample at each wavelength interval.  They are preferred because of their low cost of manufacture and portability.

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Chemicals used

Acid – 0.1 M, 0.05 M, 0.025M

Alcohol – 10%, 50%, 80%

I have planned to use the following concentrations of acid and alcohol so that I can test the effect of the most concentrated, least concentrated and the middle concentration. This can give me a better idea of the change taking place in the albumen.

To prepare the acid solutions I will use the formula C1V1=C2V2

I was provided with 0.1 M of HCl. So I just added 10cm3 of this to the measuring cylinder and then check the lower meniscus and then ...

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