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Catalase Design Lab
Biology 2008 Falconer
Your task:
Design a lab experiment that tests the effect of one variable on the enzyme catalase.
Background Information:
In your body, the enzyme catalase is produced by peroxisomes to break down hydrogen
peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide is a toxic waste product that is part of your cell’s metabolism.
Catalase converts H2O2 to harmless water and oxygen gas. As with any enzyme, how well
catalase works is dependent on its environment – the acidity, the amount of substrate, the
amount of enzyme, salt concentration and temperature would each have an effect on the rate
of the catalase activity.
The easiest way to measure the activity of catalase and hydrogen peroxide is to dip a small
circle of filter paper into the catalase enzyme and dropping the disk into a graduated cylinder
full of hydrogen peroxide. The disk will start to sink, but then oxygen bubbles formed by the
reaction will bring back the disk to the top of the liquid.
Lab Group Jobs:
Boss – responsible for sharing information and getting the lab done
Timer – responsible for timing and helping to run the experiment
Recorder – responsible for recording group results
Gopher – responsible for gathering materials and helping with running experiment
Materials available:
Catalase (100%) – you can change the solution concentration by diluting
H2O2 (3%) - you can change the solution concentration by diluting
Water – cold and hot
Water baths (beakers)
Vinegar (acid)
(3)Each group must turn in individual design sheets with all details completed
(3)On the back of the design sheet, record all relevant data in table form
State a one paragraph conclusion of what the findings of the experiment were