How Does Hydrochloric Acid Affect The Rate Of Digestion

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In order for organisms to carry on life, energy must be provided. The food taken into the body must be broken down into smaller pieces before it can be used as a source of energy by the organism. This process of breaking down food is called digestion and there are many enzymes used in order for digestion to occur.
Enzymes are catalysts, which means that they can start and speed up a chemical reaction. Without enzymes in our body, it would take a longer period of time for digestion to occur. Enzymes bind themselves to substrates, thus lowering the activation energy of the chemical reaction they are catalyzing. This will increase the reaction speed making digestion to occur faster.
Pepsin is an enzyme found in the gastric juice in the stomach. It is produced by the gastric cells and it is formed when pepsinogen is released. When hydrochloric acid is presented, pepsinogen (inactive enzyme) will be converted into pepsin (active enzyme), which the functions is to catalyze reactions with protein. …show more content…

Pepsin will digest polypeptides in the stomach turning it into dipeptides and amino acids. Water is required for hydrolysis to occur, which is the breaking down of the peptide bonds joining amino acids together.
Pepsin works best between pH levels 1 to 3, as this would be the normal acidity range of the gastric juice. Changing the pH level can also change the shape of the proteins being digested, and this process is called denaturing. For this experiment 8% pepsin solution was used as the average of the secretion of pepsin in the gastric juice per meal is about 8% to 18%. For this task is will be investigated the effect of different pH levels on pepsin activity using the protein egg

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