The Influence Of Enzymes

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Enzymes are substances produced by living organisms that act as catalysts to reduce the activation energy required for a chemical reaction. By lowering the activation energy, enzymes speed up the chemical reaction by providing an alternative action pathway (“Enzymes”). Enzymes are required in minute amounts because they remain unchanged after a reaction has occurred, so the same enzyme molecules can be reused over and over again.
Since enzymes are proteins, they have active sites that speed up the reaction and are therefore highly specific in their action. Enzymes must also be kept in very particular conditions as they can be affected by temperature and pH. Up to a certain point, the rate of an enzymatic reaction will proportionally increase with increasing temperature (Campbell, et al. 2010). If the temperature were to increase too high, the hydrogen bonds holding the protein in it’s structure would break and the enzyme would begin to denature, causing the active site to change shape (Adam-Day 2015). Enzymes are important because the control the speed of reactions in your body, and without them, the reactions would occur too slowly to keep us alive.
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For example, when we were working with the reaction chamber, we could see gas leaving the chamber from a small hole at the base of the ‘straw’ that lead into the chamber. If that gas had been collected, we would have had more accurate data. This could be resolved by testing the chamber before hand to be certain that there are no gaps in the stopper and the chamber before the experiment is performed. We also struggled with using the graduated cylinder as a measuring apparatus so some oxygen produced may have escaped into the environment instead of into the cylinder. This could be resolved by being prepared for the flip of the chamber and having the cylinder prepped before the flip has even

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