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Effecting Enzymes: Effects of Temperature and pH on Reaction

An enzyme is a biological catalyst that speeds up chemical reaction rates.This experiment studied the reaction rate of the alpha-amylase enzyme on a starch solution. I used two enzyme control mechanisms, pH and temperature, to determine the optimal conditions needed for alpha amylase to efficiently break down starch.The absorbance of starch in my experimental reactions was measured using a spectrophotometer.With the resulting data, bell curves were constructed that clearly defined the optimum pH as well as the optimum temperature needed for this reaction.This experiment proved expected results even though it contained a few correctable flaws.The outcome of this experiment yields the information needed to determine the best conditions for the enzyme alpha-amylase to efficiently break down starch molecules.
Biological catalysts support nearly all of the chemical reactions needed to maintain homeostasis.These catalysts are known as enzymes.They are found throughout the body including all of the tissues and body fluids.Enzyme activity is depended upon by almost every important life process.Chemical reactions include a transition state in which bonds are broken and molecules are changed.These changes require a certain amount of energy that is called the activation energy.This is where enzymes come into play.To lower this activation energy, enzymes catalyze a reaction to speed the rate at which the products are formed.In an enzymatic reaction, the reacting molecule is called the substrate.When the enzyme meets the substrate an enzyme-substrate complex is formed.The enzyme-substrate complex then breaks down and releases the product.However crucial an enzyme is to a reaction, it does not change the configuration of either the products or the reactants.The enzyme is added to reactants and released with the products.This does not mean that enzymes are permanent.They decompose and are expelled thr…

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