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  • In this activity, students investigate the action of salivary amylase on starch present in cooked rice. Simple tests for starch and its digestion product, maltose, are applied.

    By the end of this activity, students should be able to:

    • use simple chemical tests to identify soluble starch and reducing sugars like glucose and maltose
    • safely use their own salivary amylase
    • explain in simple terms how the enzymatic digestion of starch occurs
    • recognise the need for careful control of variables such as temperature and amount of reactant in activities of this type
    • describe how high temperatures can inactivate enzymes like amylase.

    Download the Word file (see link below) for:

    • introduction/background notes
    • what you need
    • what to do
    • student worksheets.

    Related content

    The article, Rate of digestion, looks at how surface area, temperature and pH all influence the rate of digestion of large food molecules. The action of salivary amylase on starch is used as an example.

    The article Catalysing chemical reactions with enzymes includes an animated video outlining in detail how enzymes work.

    See our Enzymes Pinterest board for more resource ideas.

      Published 1 July 2011 Referencing Hub articles
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