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Biochem Mol Biol Educ. 2012 Jul;40(4):254-65. doi: 10.1002/bmb.20612. Epub 2012 Jun 18.

Characterization of the activity and stability of amylase from saliva and detergent: laboratory practicals for studying the activity and stability of amylase from saliva and various commercial detergents.

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  • 1Nutrigenomics Research Group, Department of Biochemistry and Biotechnology, Rovira i Virgili University, Tarragona, Catalonia, 43007 Spain.


This article presents two integrated laboratory exercises intended to show students the role of α-amylases (AAMYs) in saliva and detergents. These laboratory practicals are based on the determination of the enzymatic activity of amylase from saliva and different detergents using the Phadebas test (quantitative) and the Lugol test (qualitative) under different conditions (e.g. variations in temperature and alkalinity). This work also proposes the study of enzyme stability in the presence of several surfactants and oxidizing agents using the same technical approach. The proposed laboratory exercises promote the understanding of the physiological function of this enzyme and the biotechnological applications of AAMYs in the detergent industry. The exercises also promote the understanding that the enzymatic stability and performance are dependent on the organism of origin, and if necessary, these properties could be modified by genetic engineering. In addition, this article reinforces the development of laboratory skills, problem-solving capabilities, and the ability to write a laboratory report. The exercises are proposed primarily as an undergraduate project for advanced students in the biochemical and biotechnological sciences. These laboratory practicals are complementary to the previously published BAMBED article (Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education Vol. 39, No. 4, pp. 280-290, 2011) on detergent proteases.

Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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