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An Investigation To Compare The Reaction Rates Between Potato An Hydrogen Peroxide And Liver And Hydrogen Peroxide

1981 words - 8 pages

An investigation to compare the reaction rates between potato and hydrogen peroxide against liver and hydrogen peroxide through loss in mass.Background information:Catalase is an enzyme that is found in all cells. This means that it is an intracellular enzyme. And enzyme is a biological catalyst. A catalyst is some thing that speeds up a reaction without being changed itself. Because of this enzymes and catalysts can be used again and again. Enzymes are protein chains that have a primary, secondary and tertiary structure. Their primary structure shows the order and types of amino acids used to form the protein chain. The secondary structure shows the basic folding of the protein and is held in place by hydrogen bonds. The tertiary structure shows a more complex folding which gives it its globular shape. The tertiary folding of the enzyme also gives it its active site. The active sit of an enzyme is the part of the enzyme that determines what the enzyme will react with. If this active site is destroyed in any way the enzyme is said to be denatured and will no longer work. Certain things affect the reaction rate of a substance where an enzyme is used. The concentration of the reactant will affect the reaction rate. If there is a strong concentration of reactant or catalase then there will be a faster reaction rate than if the concentration was weak. Also, the higher the temperature of the substance the faster the reaction rate will be. This also applies to the surface area of the cells containing the catalase. If the cells have a large area the reaction rate will be very fast. This is because more catalase will be exposed to the reactant and this will mean that more products are being made in a short amount of time. However if the cells have a small surface area then the reaction rate will be slow because less of the enzyme will be accessible to the product and therefore fewer products will be made in a certain amount of time. Catalase reacts with hydrogen peroxide to form water and oxygen in the cells. Hydrogen peroxide is a toxic chemical that is made naturally in the cells. Because it is toxic it has to be removed. This is why there is catalase in the cells. Some types of cells contain more catalase than other types of cells. For instance the liver contains a lot of catalase. This is because the liver is a very active part of the body and therefore produces a lot of hydrogen peroxide. One of the liver's major functions is the manufacture and secretion of bile, which is stored in the gall bladder and released in the small intestine. To combat this the liver cells need to contain a lot of catalase. The liver also controls glucose levels in the blood and breaks down amino acids. Plant cells on the other hand do not contain a lot of catalase. This is because plants are very inactive and do not produce a lot of hydrogen peroxide and therefore do not need to have a lot of catalase to get rid of it. The potato is a tubur, which means it is a store of...

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