Benzoquinone Reasearch Lab Report

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Materials and Methods:
First, a potato was removed from the refrigerator, where it had remained in order to slow down the benzoquinone reaction. The potato was then skinned to remove parts of the potato that were dark and could affect the spectrophotometer reading. The skinning of the potato also damaged the cells, initiating the release of catechol from within the cells. The potato was then placed in distilled water, a hypotonic solution, in order to further damage the plant cells so that they would release catechol from the cells and catecholase from the extracellular matrix. Next, the potato was chopped into smaller chunks to facilitate blending. The potato chunks were then placed into a blender that had been chilled in order to prevent the acceleration of the reaction. The chunks were then blended in three ten-second bursts, also to prevent prolonged use of the blender’s motor from quickening the reaction by heating the enzyme. If these conditions were not controlled, then the reaction would accelerate too quickly, which would directly affect the initial absorbance measurement since some benzoquinone would already have formed. Next, the blended potato was filtered through four layers of cheesecloth with
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This experiment also explained the science behind why citric acids such as lemon juice are commonly used to prevent fruit from turning brown over time. Although some small error could have occurred due to exposure time of oxygen, the regulation of the experiment procedure by only using the Parafilm to quickly mix the contents minimized this error. The results were sufficient to compare with the control, and supported the hypothesis that Cu2+ is a cofactor for catecholase and necessary for the production of
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