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enzymelabreport - The Effects of Temperature pH Enzyme...

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The Effects of Temperature, pH, Enzyme Concentration, and Substrate Concentration on the Enzymatic Activity of the Enzyme Catecholase
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Introduction Enzymes are proteins that catalyze chemical reactions, without being consumed by the reaction themselves. Each enzyme has a groove called an active site in which a substrate, the reactant that the enzyme acts on, fits into (Helms et al ., 1998). Once the substrate is in the active site, the R groups of the amino acids in the active site make the active site close in around the substrate and hold it firmly, which is called an induced fit. The induced fit helps an enzyme catalyze reactions by bringing the chemical groups of the active site closer to the substrate. The structure of an enzyme’s active site, a consequence of the enzyme’s amino acid sequence, and the compatible shape of the substrate determines its specificity (Campbell and Reece, 2008). The experiments are performed with catecholase, an enzyme found in potatoes. When the compound catechol, located in potatoes, meets oxygen, it is oxidized and turned into benzoquinone, and oxygen is reduced and makes water. Catecholase catalyzes this reaction between catechol and oxygen. The chains of benzoquinone molecules that form are part of the red and brown melanoid pigments, thus turning a potato dark when it is exposed to oxygen. The experiments will be analyzed by observing the color benzoquinone gives (Helms et al ., 1998). Because an enzyme is a protein, whatever affects proteins should affect enzymes as well. Proteins breaking down, or denaturing results from altered pHs, temperatures, and concentrations of the protein’s environment (Helms et al ., 1998). In this experiment, the effects of pH, temperature, enzyme concentration, and substrate concentration will be tested on the enzyme catecholase. pH is a measure of hydrogen ion and sodium hydroxide ion concentration. A change in the presence of those ions can interfere with the molecular structure of a protein, changing its
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shape. Therefore, enzymes are also affected by modifications of pH. Each enzyme has its own optimal pH which it works under, but most fall between 6 and 8 (Campbell and Reece, 2008). Temperature is a measure of heat, which involves the kinetic energy, or movement, of molecules in a system. The higher the temperature, the more molecules move, and the faster chemical reactions can take place because of proximity. Following, the lower the temperature, the more molecules slow down, and the slower a chemical reaction will take place. An enzyme catalysis reaction is a chemical reaction that is affected by temperature. Most proteins in living tissue denature at 37 C, so unlimited temperature increases will not keep increasing protein ̊ activity (Moore et al., 2008) . If enzymes help catalyze reactions, it makes sense that the more enzymes there are, the faster enzymatic activity will occur. Enzymatic activity will increase with the addition of more enzymes, only if the substrate concentration is in excess of the enzyme concentration (Helms et al ., 1998).
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