Catalase Experiment

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What is the effect of temperature on oxygen gas production in a Bos taurus liver catalase reaction, with substrate hydrogen peroxide, measured by a gas pressure sensor?

Biological catalysts called enzymes are made by living cells and increase biochemical reactions that take place. Enzymes are globular proteins having a multiplex 3-dimensional structure, can increase the rate of chemical reactions without themselves being changed. Enzymes transform substrates into a product. Enzymes have a region called the active site. This is because a substrate has specific chemical properties that satisfy the chemical properties of the active site. Enzymes quicken reactions by decreasing the amount of energy needed for the reactant to undergo a specific reaction by providing an alternative reaction pathway.

In this experiment, the enzyme catalase will be used. The enzyme catalase is commonly found in animal and plant cells, but a substantial amount is found in liver. The liver detoxifies the blood to get rid of substances such as alcohols and drugs, in this case it will break down a toxic molecule called hydrogen peroxide H2O2 into 2 non-toxic products being oxygen O2 and water H2O. Other enzymes in the body that help with breaking down amino acids and fatty acids produce a significant amount of hydrogen peroxide, and without the enzyme catalase, hydrogen peroxide levels in our body could increase thus damaging tissue. A chemical reaction is shown below:

2H2O2 =2H2O + O2


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