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Chemistry science fair project:
Which drinks have the highest glucose concentration level after adding the enzyme invertase?

Project Information
Title: Which drinks have the highest glucose concentration level after adding the enzyme invertase?
Subject: Chemistry
Subcategory: Biochemistry / Medicine (Diabetes)
Grade level: Middle School - Grades 7-9
Academic Level: Ordinary
Project Type: Experimental
Cost: Low
Awards: 1st Place, Canada Wide Virtual Science Fair ($400)
Affiliation: Canada Wide Virtual Science Fair
Year: 2013
Materials: Glucose test strips, different beverages, invertase enzyme, table sugar
Concepts: Hydrolysis
Description: Invertase is an enzyme that converts sucrose into glucose (diabetes related) and by this replicates one of the chemical reactions that occurs during digestion. This project tries to find out which drinks out of Coke, Red Bull, Gatorade, and Sunny D will have the highest glucose concentration level after adding the enzyme invertase and by this to establish which drink is the most detrimental for diabetes type 2 patients. The amount of glucose in the drinks before and after adding invertase is measured by using glucose test strips.
Link: http://www.virtualsciencefair.org/2013/Hamidh
Short Background


Hydrolysis breaks the glycosidic bond (a type of covalent bond that joins a carbohydrate (sugar) molecule to another group) converting sucrose into glucose and fructose. Hydrolysis is, however, so slow that solutions of sucrose can sit for years with negligible change. If the enzyme sucrase is added, however, the reaction will proceed rapidly. Hydrolysis can also be accelerated with acids, such as cream of tartar or lemon juice, both weak acids. Likewise, gastric acidity converts sucrose to glucose and fructose during digestion.

In humans and other mammals, sucrose is broken down into its constituent monosaccharides, glucose and fructose, by sucrase or isomaltase glycoside hydrolases, which are located in the membrane of the microvilli lining the duodenum. The resulting glucose and fructose molecules are then rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream. In bacteria and some animals, sucrose is digested by the enzyme invertase.

Sucrose is a disaccharide made up of 50% glucose and 50% fructose and has a glycemic index of 65. Sucrose is digested rapidly, but has a relatively low glycemic index due to its content of fructose, which has a minimal effect on blood glucose.

As with other sugars, sucrose is digested into its components via the enzyme sucrase to glucose (blood sugar) and fructose. The glucose component is transported into the blood (90%) and excess glucose is converted to temporary storage in the liver named glycogen. The fructose is either bonded to cellulose and transported out the GI tract or processed by the liver into citrates, aldehydes, and, for the most part, lipid droplets (fat).

The best-known disaccharide is sucrose (table sugar). Hydrolysis of sucrose yields glucose and fructose. Invertase is a sucrase used industrially for the hydrolysis of sucrose to so-called invert sugar.

Inverted sugar syrup is a mixture of glucose and fructose; it is obtained by splitting sucrose into these two components. Compared with its precursor, sucrose, inverted sugar is sweeter and its products tend to retain moisture and are less prone to crystallization. Inverted sugar is therefore valued by bakers, who refer to the syrup as trimoline or invert syrup.

In technical terms, sucrose is a disaccharide, which means that it is a molecule derived from two simple sugars (monosaccharides). In the case of sucrose, these monosaccharide building blocks are fructose and glucose. The splitting of sucrose is a hydrolysis reaction. The hydrolysis can be induced simply by heating an aqueous solution of sucrose, but more commonly, catalysts are added to accelerate the conversion. The biological catalysts that are added are called sucrases (in animals) and invertases (in plants). Sucrases and invertases are types of glycoside hydrolase enzymes. Acid, such as lemon juice or cream of tartar, also accelerate the conversion of sucrose to invert.

Hydrolysis is where a carbohydrate is broken into its component sugar molecules by saccharification in the presence of water. Generally, hydrolysis or saccharification is a step in the degradation of a substance.

See also: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrolysis

Source: Wikipedia (All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License and Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.)

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Last updated: June 2013
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