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Affect of Concentration of Enzymes on Rate of Break Down of Egg White

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Affect of Concentration of Enzymes on Rate of Break Down of Egg White

Enzyme concentrations


The higher the concentration of protease enzyme the higher the rate of breakdown of the egg white. This is because egg white is mainly formed of collagen, which is a protein, which is what the enzyme protease breaks down. The more enzyme there is the more enzyme substrate complexes are formed which break down peptide links between the monomers of the protein accelerating the amount of protein broken down in a space of time.

How the results will be obtained

Certain concentrations of enzyme will be put into test tubes containing a piece of egg white and a control of egg white with no enzyme will be put in a test tube. The control is to compare the rest of the test tubes with, if the enzymes have an effect they will take a different time than the control to breakdown the egg white. The test tubes will be put into a water bath to maintain a constant temperature (37°C the same as internal body temperature) and timed to see how long it takes the contents of each individual test tube to go clear. When the solutions go clear it means that all the protein in the solutions has been broken down. The results of the experiment will be kept valid and accurate by applying the same conditions to each test tube except the concentration of enzyme put into the solutions. By doing this the results will be able to show whether enzyme concentration really does have an effect on the rate of reaction because nothing except the concentration of enzyme has been changed for each individual test tube. Thus, differences between the times it takes for the contents of each individual test tube to go clear is down to the differences in the concentrations of enzyme. The measurements made will be made as precise as possible by trying to keep the conditions applied to the contents in the test tubes as constant as possible. This includes by measuring solutions and solids as correctly and near as possible and timing, how long the reactions take as correctly as possible. The results will be made repeatable by having a set of instructions that are clear and therefore can be followed again in the same way. A replication of the experiment will take place, this is necessary to make comparisons with to make sure none of the results are random errors.


The dependent variable is the rate of the breakdown of protein.

The independent variable is the concentration of the enzyme solution.

Variables that will be controlled are,

the temperature of the solution will be kept constant

type of enzyme will be the same

same type of apparatus will be used

the amount of egg white used in each solution will be kept constant

the same type of egg white will be used


Standard protease solution (1% albumen 1% tripsin 98% water) this is being used because protease is the enzyme that specifically breaks down protein.

Egg white, this is being used because it is mainly composed of collagen a protein and once the collagen in it is broken down the solution the egg whites in will go transparent letting the experimenter know all the collagen has been broken down.

Water bath (37°C), this is to keep the solutions of egg white, water and protease solution while the enzyme substrate complexes are taking place at constant temperature increasing the reliability and the validity of the results obtained.

Beakers, to carry solutions and solids while adding them together and mixing them

Measuring cylinders, to measure and make up the egg white, water and protease solutions, to make sure the concentrations of each are correct

Pipettes, to measure out and move solutions

Test tubes, to carry the solution of water, egg white and protease solution while in the water bath

Test tube rack, to hold the test tubes

Stop clock, to measure the amount of time it takes for the solutions of water, egg white and protease solution to go clear

Forceps, to move the pieces of egg white

Distilled water, to put in the solutions to give them the correct concentrations

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