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The Chemical Educator

ISSN: 1430-4171 (electronic version)

Table of Contents

Abstract Volume 16 (2011) pp 26-28

An Enzymatic Experiment for the Undergraduate Laboratory Utilizing Commercially Available Material

Elizabeth A. Shugart, Tessa Frye, Kayleen Elsberry , Jessica A VanderWilp , and John H. Shugart*,Laura K. Ter Meer Guardia, Aaron J. Belli, Gavin J. Molta, Patrick Gordon, and Christine H. Jaworek-Lopes*

Lee University, Math and Science Department, 1120 North Ocoee Street, Cleveland, TN 37320-3450,; and Department of Chemistry, Berry College, Mount Berry, GA 30149
Received November 18, 2009. Accepted April 9, 2010.

Published: 4 February 2011

Abstract. Applications in chemistry that lead to real world function increase the interest in applied science. For the chemistry student, the reaction between lactose and lactase provides an opportunity to study enzyme kinetics using materials obtained from everyday sources. The effectiveness of the purification of lactose from powdered milk and the efficiency of Lactaid to break down lactose was tested using a glucometer. First enzyme kinetics were established using a known concentrations of lactose. Then, lactose was purified from powdered milk using both centrifugation and crystallization techniques. This purified lactose was mixed with the lactase enzyme from Lactaid and the rate of the reaction was monitored by the Ascencia Contour glucometer. It was found that glucometers can be used to monitor the enzymatic reaction of Lactaid using a lactose substrate purified from powdered milk.

Key Words: Laboratories and Demonstrations; biochemistry; general chemistry; lactase; enzyme kinetics; cost effective; carbohydrate purification

(*) Corresponding author. (E-mail:

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