Biology Controlled Ass... Apple Pectinase

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The aim of this experiment is to see the effect of different Pectinase concentrations have on the production on apple juice. Pectinase is an enzyme, which breaks down pectin, a polysaccharide found in plant cell walls. This enzyme is mainly commercially used to speed up the process of fruit juice production as the cell walls of plants are broken down more quickly. Therefore by changing the Pectinase concentrations, the results may show the effects it may have on how much apple juice will be produced.

The apple pulp mixed with any of the pectinase concentrations will yield greater volume of apple juice than the one which is not mixed with pectinase. Also as the concentration of the Pectinase increases in concentration, there will be more apple juice produced. However, after a certain Pectinase concentration, the volume of apple juice produced would not be proportional to the increase in enzyme concentration.

This is because there is an excess of active sites in the Pectinase for the pectin in the cell walls of the apple to react with and therefore the apple juice produced will not increase further. The enzymes have specific shapes so that they can catalyse reactions. Every enzyme has an active site, which is the part where it joins to its substrate to catalyse the reaction. If the substrate doesn’t match its active site the reaction wont catalyse. This is called the lock and key mechanism. If, however, there are more active sites than substrate then no matter how high the concentration is it wont affect the production of apple juice. Since I am only varying the concentration of the enzyme (pectinase) I will have to make sure that all other variables are maintained (e.g. Temperature, PH and the amount of apple pulp). This is because enzymes are affected by temperature, pH and concentration.

Equipment| Why I am using this equipment|
Apple pulp| I am using apple pulp as an example of a fruit to determine the maximum amount of juice that can be extracted using different concentrations of the enzyme pectinase. I will be using 20g of apple pulp for each percentage concentration of pectinase solution| Pectinase solution| I am using the enzyme pectinase to break down the pectin in the cell wall so that the fruit juice can be extracted. I will be using 5 different percentage concentrations of pectinase solution (0%, 25%, 50%, 75%, 100%) to see which concentration extracts the maximum amount of apple juice.| Filter paper| I am using filter paper in the experiment to filter the apple juice into the measuring cylinder, separating it from the apple pulp.| Glass rod| I am using a glass rod in order to stir the apple pulp and pectinase solution together in a beaker so that the pectinase is evenly mixed throughout the apple pulp.| Beakers| I am using beakers into which I will put the apple pulp and pectinase solution so that effective stirring can take place.| Measuring cylinder| I am using measuring cylinders so that the apple juice extracted using the pectinase can be measured accurately volumetrically. Therefore, I can then measure how many milliliters of apple juice have been produced from the different percentage concentrations of pectinase.| Filter funnel| I am using a filter funnel so that I can hold the filter paper containing the mixture of apple pulp and pectinase solution. The filter funnel also fits well in the measuring cylinder.| Syringe | I am using a syringe to measure accurately the correct volume of pectinase solution (5cm3) to be added to the apple pulp at different concentration of pectinase enzyme. The concentrations are: 0%, 25%, 50%, 75% and 100%.| Thermometer| I am using a thermometer to monitor the temperature of the apple pulp and pectinase mixture and noting down any changes in temperature. | Stopwatch| I am using a stopwatch to ensure that when the pectinase is added to the apple pulp it is only incubated for precisely 10 minutes for each of...
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