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9.2 Maintaining a balance: 1.

Temperature range
identify the role of enzymes in metabolism, describe their chemical composition and use a simple
model to describe their specificity on substrates
Role in metabolism:
Biological catalysts which control the rate of reaction within cells (metabolism). Without enzymes,
metabolism would be too slow to support life

Chemical composition:
Enzymes are globular proteins whose shapes are specialised so that other chemicals (substrates)
can form a temporary bond with them.

The lock-key model: clearly shows an enzymes specificity on a substrate

The induced fit model: proposes that the active site slightly changes its shape to accommodate the
substrate perfectly

identify the pH as a way of describing the acidity of a substance

pH is a scale related to the concentration of hydrogen ions in a solution
pH value <7 = acidic (eg. lemon juice = pH 2)
pH value of 7 = neutral solution (eg. water)
pH value >7 = basic (eg. bleach = pH 12)

explain why the maintenance of a constant internal environment is important for optimal metabolic

Vital form optimum enzyme efficiency (metabolism)
Enzymes work in a limited pH range, outside this range they will become denatured and not work
as efficiently or cease to work at all
(eg) stomach enzymes work at an optimum between 2 - 3pH

describe homeostasis as the process by which organisms maintain a relatively stable internal
Homeostasis is the process by which the internal environment is kept within normal limits
regardless, of the external environmental conditions, allowing the enzyme's optimal conditions to
be met and the body to work efficiently and kept as stable as possible
(eg) temperature, pH, gas levels, water and salt concentrations

explain that homeostasis consists of two stages:

Detecting changes from the stable state
A receptor detects a change in some variable in the organism's internal environment, for example,
sensory neurons in the skin pick up a decrease or increase in temperature of air surrounding the

Counteracting changes from the stable state
An appropriate response occurs that counteracts the changes and thus maintains the stable
environment, for example, shivering to generate heat in muscles.

outline the role of the nervous system in detecting and responding to environmental changes

Nervous system consists of:
Central nervous system (CNS): brain and spinal cord
Peripheral nervous system (PNS): sensory nerves and
effector nerves.

Example flow chart:
Stimulus (putting hand on hot plate) sensory nerves (message = too hot) control centre in
hypothalamus in brain (take hand off hot plate) effector nerve (message: take hand off hot
plate) response (hand taken off hot plate)

identify the broad range of temperatures over which life is found compared with the narrow limits for
individual species

Life can be found at temperatures from - 40
C to 120
A majority of living organisms are found between - 2
C and 40
Each individual species has a narrow range of temperatures in which it can survive
(eg) humans can only survive unclothed and unsheltered from 27C to 43C
Below 0
C cells risk crystallisation
Above 45
C proteins within cells may denature.

compare responses of named Australian ectothermic and endothermic organisms to changes in the
ambient temperature and explain how these responses assist temperature regulation

Endotherms: maintain a constant body temperature independent of the environment

Red kangaroo:
licks the inside of its paws, the evaporation from saliva promotes the loss of heat from the blood
blood supply is shunted to skins surface, so that heat can be easily dumped to the outside
blood vessel vasodilation to remove heat from under skins surface

Rabbit-eared bandicoot:
Large ears provide a large surface area to pass excess heat when it is burrowing during the heat of
day and when it is active at dusk

Ectotherms: dependent on external sources of body heat

Move into sun when cold and seek shade when hot
Change body shape to either increase of decrease the skins SA to sun (dependent on hot/cold)

Blue tongue lizard:
Move into sun when cold and seek shade when hot (faces parallel to sun when cold to increase SA
exposure to sun)

identify some responses of plants to temperature change

Plants can be damaged at extreme temperatures as it can denature enzyme structures whoch are
vital for photosynthesis and respiration

Cold conditions:
Extracellular ice formation causes dehydration
Some plants tolerate freezing temperatures altering their solute concentrations and lack of ice-
nucleating sites in cells to prevent intracellular freezing

Hot conditions:
Open stomates to create a cooling effect by evaporation
Although, this risks dehydration of the plant

identify data sources, plan, choose equipment or resources and perform a first-hand investigation to
test the effect of:
increased temperature
change in pH
change in substrate concentrations
...on the activity of a named enzyme: enzyme = catalase (liver), substrate = hydrogen peroxide [for all]

Increased temperature

1. Set up 4 different temperatures in water bath (0, 20, 40, 80C)
2. Get 2 test tubes- fill one with 2cm of hydrogen peroxide and place an (approximately) 1cm piece of
liver into the remaining test tube.
3. Start with the lowest temperature water bath, 0C. Place the 2 test tubes in this condition for 5
4. After 5 minutes, pour the peroxide into the liver, record observations and measure the height of
the bubbles.
Follow these first 4 steps for the 20C, 40C, and 80C water baths.

Independent (change): temperature of baths.
Dependent (measures): bubble height
Constant (controlled):
Volume of hydrogen peroxide = 2ml
Concentration of hydrogen peroxide = 12%
Amount of liver (Catalase- enzyme from the liver)
Size and shape of the test tubes

Temperature Bubble height (mm)
0C 20
20C 50
40C 140
80C 0

As the temperature ranges higher or lower from 37C, the enzyme activity decreases until
becoming unreactive- this is why the body attempts to maintain a constant temperature of 37C.

Change in pH

1. Set up 3 test tubes and put a piece of liver (catalase) into the bottom of each test tube
2. Fill each with 1cm of a different pH (pH1, pH7, pH13)
3. Let then stand for 5 minutes
4. Add 2cm of hydrogen peroxide to each, record observations and measure the height of the

Independent (change): pH
Dependent (measures): bubble height
Constant (controlled):
Volume of hydrogen peroxide, liver, pH
Equipment sizing
Room temperature
Timing= 5mins
Concentration of hydrogen peroxide = 12%

Ph Bubble height (cm)
1 0.5
7 (control) 10
13 3

As the temperature ranges higher or lower from pH 7, the enzyme activity decreases- proving enzymes
work more efficiently with a neutral base in the body because the body is predominantly water (or
neutrally) based.

Change in substrate concentrations

1. Set up 4 test tubes and put a piece of liver into the bottom of each test tube
2. Add 1cm of 12% hydrogen peroxide to test tube 4. Record time taken for bubbles to reach
maximum height and measure height.
3. Follow this same procedure with test tubes:
3 at 6% hydrogen peroxide
2 at 3% hydrogen peroxide
1 with water

Independent (change): substrate concentration
Dependent (measures): bubble height
Constant (controlled):
Volume of hydrogen peroxide, liver, substrate
Equipment and its sizing

Test tube
Bubble height (mm)
0 (water) 0
3 2mm
6 15mm
12 30mm- grew until

An increase in substrate concentration resulted in an increase in enzyme activity.

Gather, process and analyse information from secondary sources and use available evidence to
develop a model of a feedback mechanism

analyse information from secondary sources to describe adaptations and responses that have
occurred in Australian organisms to assist temperature regulation

Bogong moths:
Hibernate: remain under shelter, slow metabolism, drop body temperature

Central netted dragon:
Shelter: dig burrow, seeks shelter when hot

Shunt blood to skin surface to allow heat loss

Grey kangaroo:
Lick forearms to allow evaporation which has a cooling effect
Sweating and panting to release heat from body

9.2 Maintaining a balance: 2. A watery medium

identify the form(s) in which each of the following is carried in mammalian blood:

explain the adaptive advantage of haemoglobin

Most oxygen is carried by haemoglobin in the red blood cells
Hemoglobin enables increased 02 carrying capacity (increases the carrying capacity of blood by
Presence of haemoglobin, therefore, results in increased energy as 02 is used to breakdown foods,
such as carbohydrates and fats
The net effect is that these organisms are more effective operators in a given environment
compared to competitors (especially at high altitudes where 02 levels are low)

compare the structure of arteries, capillaries and veins in relation to their function

Carry blood away from the heart
Have thick, elastic walls, smooth muscle to contract the vessel and connective tissue to allow for

Carry blood back toward the heart
Contain valves that prevent the backflow of blood

Connect arteries to veins
Walls that are only one cell thick to allow easy diffusion of materials

describe the main changes in the chemical composition of the blood as it moves around the body
and identify tissues in which these changes occur

Tissue Change in composition
Lungs Increase 02, decrease CO2
Body tissue Decrease 02, increase CO2
Small intestine Increase amino acids and glucose
Large intestine Increase water, salts, vitamins
Liver Glucose levels are regulated, deamination of excess amino acids
Kidney Decrease in urea, water, salts

Changes are, for example, lungs: 02 leaving is higher and CO2 leaving is lower

outline the need for oxygen in living cells and explain why removal of carbon dioxide from cells is

Outside of a limited pH range of about 7.35 pH, the enzymes in blood will denature
Carbon dioxide must be removed in order to maintain normal pH in the blood, otherwise carbonic
acid will form, meaning the blood will become acidic, causing denaturing of enzymes and, thus,
cell death

describe current theories about processes responsible for the movement of materials through plants
in xylem and phloem tissue

Xylem transports water and mineral ions upward only, from roots toward leaves.
Phloem transports organic materials (esp. sugars) up and down to where the material is needed or
for storage.

Xylem: The transpiration-cohesion-tension mechanism
Sap is mainly pulled by transpiration. Cohesion is the sticking together of water molecules so
that they form a continuous stream of molecules extending from the leaves down to the roots.
Water molecules also adhere to the cellulose molecules in the walls of the xylem. As water
molecules are removed by transpiration in the leaf, the next molecule moves upwards to take its
place, pulling the stream of molecules continuously along.
This is passive transport.

Phloem: The Source to Sink theory
Sugar is actively loaded into the phloem tube from the leaf (photosynthesis)
Water enters by osmosis due to a high solute concentration in the phloem tube. Water pressure is
now raised at this end of the tube.
At the sugar sink, sugar leaves the phloem tissue to be used or stored. Water follows the sugar, by
osmosis (resulting in water pressure drop in phloem)
The increased pressure at the source end, and the reduction of pressure at the sink end, causes
water to flow from source to sink.

perform a first-hand investigation to demonstrate the effect of dissolved carbon dioxide on the pH of

Cellular respiration causes carbon dioxide to be produced. When carbon dioxide dissolves in water
in forms carbonic acid which is toxic to cells (denatures enzymes)

Investigate the effect of dissolved carbon on the pH of dissolved water

If carbon is dissolved in water, it will lower the pH of the water = acidic

2 test tubes
Measuring cylinder
Universal indicator and colour chart- to determine pH colour changes
Test tube rack
Safety glasses
Data logger and pH probe- to detect, record and store measurements over time.

Using a data logger with a pH probe, take readings of the change in pH of 100 mL of distilled water
before and after exhaled air is bubbled through it over a two-minute period.


Dependent (measure): colour of universal indicator (pH).
Independent (change): amount of carbon dioxide (present / absent).
Constant (controlled): amount of water in test tubes, drops of universal indicator, environmental

Test Control pH
after 1min
Experiment pH
after 1 min
1 7 5
2 7 5
Average 7 5

As number of breaths increased, the pH of the water decreased. Since exhalations contain carbon
dioxide, it can be concluded that dissolved carbon dioxide decreases the pH of water

Analyse information from secondary sources of light microscope images to estimate the size of red
and white blood cells and draw a scaled diagram of each.


Magnification on Low Power = 100X, FOV = 1 (1600um OR 1.6mm)
Magnification on High Power = 400X, FOV = (400um)

Estimated size:

RBCs (generally around 7.3um)
Place blood smear under HP and estimate number of RBCs across diameter
Divide this number (eg. 55) by FOV (400um) to gain an estimated size of RBCs (400/55 = 7.3um)

WBCs (generally around 10um)
Compare their proportions with that of red blood cells.
(eg) is the WBC half the size or twice the size of RBC?
Repeat this process with other WBCs and obtain an average (accuracy and validity)

Scaled diagram:
(e.g.) 1cm=2um (micrometers)

analyse information from secondary sources to identify current technologies that allow measurement
of oxygen saturation and carbon dioxide concentrations in blood and describe and explain the
conditions under which these technologies are used.

Identify procedure:
Pulse oximeter

Describe procedure:
A small clip with a sensor is attached to the person's finger, earlobe or toe. A cable connects the
sensor to the pulse oximeter machine. The colour of the blood changes according to the amount of
oxygen that is dissolved in the blood. Blood that is high in oxygen is bright red while blood low in
oxygen is a darker colour. A reading is given in a percentage form.

Identify procedure:
arterial blood gas (ABG) analysis machines

Describe procedure:
monitoring the rate of diffusion of these gases through artificial membranes which are permeable
to these gases. When moving through a membrane, oxygen in the blood produces an electrical
current while carbon dioxide changes the pH of the solution.

Explain uses:
Used to monitor the level of oxygen in a person's blood during heavy sedation or anesthesia. Can
also be used to check the body's response to different medications or to monitor a person with
asthma or who is having trouble breathing.

Analyse information from secondary sources to identify the products extracted from donated blood
and discuss the uses of these products

Red blood cells (RBCs)
replace cells lost following significant bleeding (accident victims)

Platelet concentrate

Fresh frozen plasma (FFP)
Clotting problems
After liver transplants / trauma

analyse and present information from secondary sources to report on progress in the production of
artificial blood and use available evidence to propose reasons why such research is needed

Early 1900s:
successful transfusions were carried out as blood components were understood

Up until the HIV crisis in the 1980s:
little interest in artificial blood as there did not seem a great need. With the transmission of the
virus during transfusions, there was nothing to replace donor blood, so artificial blood became a
priority for research.

sensitive screening tests have been developed for potential infective organisms, such as HIV and
hepatitis, making donor blood much safer.
safe and effective blood substitutes available for certain applications, although not ready for
widespread use. Better blood substitutes are still needed.
continuing shortage of donor blood to help the victims of emergencies, conflicts and natural
disasters. Furthermore, there is no guarantee that something similar to the HIV crisis will not occur
in the future.

Choose equipment or resources to perform a first-hand investigation to gather first-hand data to
draw transverse and longitudinal sections of phloem and xylem tissue

To gather first-hand data to draw a longitudinal and transverse sections of phloem and xylem

1. A stick of celery (with leaves still on it) was left standing overnight in a beaker of water containing
red food dye.
2. Using a sharp razor blade very thin lengths were cut both across the stalk (for the transverse
section) and down the length of the stalk (for the longitudinal section).
3. One of each type of slice was prepared as a wet mount and put under a microscope. Diagrams
were drawn of what was visible under the microscope.

Results and Conclusion
The dye rose up the xylem, staining it strongly, while the phloem was left unstained, making it easy
to tell them apart.

9.2 Maintaining a balance: 3. Gases, water and waste products

explain why the concentration of water in cells should be maintained within a narrow range for
optimal function

Water is a common compound in the body, essential for metabolism
Dehydration reduces a cells ability to retain compounds in solution and excrete wastes
Too much water can result in cells bursting
The more water consumed, the more water carried in cells and blood and more urine is produced

explain why the removal of wastes is essential for continued metabolic activity

Nitrogenous wastes and carbon dioxide are waste products which are toxic to cells and, therefore,
must be removed quickly
Nitrogenous wastes have the ability to change the pH of cells, interfere with membrane transport
functions and may denature enzymes.
Carbon dioxide accumulation in the blood forms carbonic acid which lowers pH and denatures

identify the role of the kidney in the excretory system of fish and mammals

The kidney is an organ of the excretory system of both fish and mammals.
It plays a central role in homeostasis, forming and excreting urine, and regulating water and salt
concentration in the blood.
Fish excrete ammonia through simple diffusion from gills
Mammals excrete uric acid through kidneys

explain why the processes of diffusion and osmosis are inadequate in removing dissolved nitrogenous

Diffusion and osmosis are both passive transport, relying on random movements of molecules
Diffusion is too slow for the normal functioning of the body and does not select for useful solutes
Osmosis only deals with the movement of water and thus would only allow water to move out of
the body, not the nitrogenous wastes.

distinguish between active and passive transport and relate these to processes occurring in the
mammalian kidney

Active transport involves an expenditure of energy on the part of the organism
Passive transport involves no expenditure of energy as the materials follow the natural
concentration gradient (eg. diffusion and osmosis)

Active: glucose/salts reabsorbed from nephron into capillary
Passive: water reabsorbed from nephron into capillary

explain how the processes of filtration and reabsorption in the mammalian nephron regulate body
fluid composition

Filtration of the blood occurs in Bowman's capsule where high blood pressure in the glomerulus
forces all small molecules out of the blood into the capsule. Water, urea, ions, glucose, amino acids
and vitamins are all small enough to be moved into the glomerular filtrate. Blood cells and proteins
are too large to be removed. This filtering process is non-selective and therefore many valuable
components of the blood must be recovered by reabsorption

Reabsorption takes place at various points along the proximal tubule, loop of Henle and distal
tubule. All glucose molecules, amino acids and most vitamins are recovered

outline the role of the hormones, aldosterone and ADH (anti-diuretic hormone), in the regulation of
water and salt levels in blood

Aldosterone (think saltosterone)
regulates the transfer of sodium and potassium ions (salt levels) in the kidney
When sodium levels are low, aldosterone is released into the blood causing more sodium to pass
from the nephron to the blood. Water then flows from the nephron into the blood by osmosis

Antidiuretic hormone (ADH or vasopressin) (think ADH20)
controls water reabsorption in the nephron
When levels of fluid in the blood drop, the hypothalamus causes the pituitary to release ADH. This
increases the permeability of the collecting ducts to water, allowing more water to be absorbed
from the urine into the blood. The resulting urine is more concentrated.
When there is too much fluid in the blood, sensors in the heart cause the hypothalamus to reduce
the production of ADH in the pituitary, decreasing the amount of water reabsorbed in the kidney.
This results in a lower blood volume and larger quantities of more dilute urine.

define enantiostasis as the maintenance of metabolic and physiological functions in response to
variations in the environment and discuss its importance to estuarine organisms in maintaining
appropriate salt concentrations

Enantiostasis is the maintenance of normal metabolic and physiological functioning, in the absence of
homeostasis, in an organism experiencing variations in its environment.

Strategies to cope with environmental salt concentrations

Modify salt concentration in their body to match surrounding environmental fluctuations
(eg) fiddler crab accumulates extra salt when in higher salt concentrations

Maintain homeostasis regardless of the osmotic pressure of the environment
(eg) salmon can drink continuously and excrete salt from gills.

Describe adaptations of a range of terrestrial Australian plants that assist in minimising water loss

Australian xerophytes (adapted to dry conditions) include:
Needlebush: hard leathery, needle-shaped leaves with reduced surface areas (avoid loss of water
dehydration from transpiration)
Saltbush: change the reflectiveness of their leaves during leaf development so that they have
highly reflective leaves during summer (to reflect heat and reduce evaporation of water)
Eucalypts: drooping leaves to reduce SA to sun during heat of day and catch light for
photosynthesis during dusk and waxy cuticles to reduce evaporation

perform a first-hand investigation of the structure of a mammalian kidney by dissection, use of a
model or visual resource and identify the regions involved in the excretion of waste products

gather, process and analyse information from secondary sources to compare the process of renal
dialysis with the function of the kidney

People with dysfunctional kidneys cannot remove wastes (like urea) and have to undergo renal
dialysis to regulate their blood

Comparison Table:

Renal Dialysis Kidney
Filtering: artificial tubing Filtering: nephrons
homeostasis doesn't take place, the diet needs
to be supplemented
dialasing solutions used to remove metabolic
wastes by diffusion, can't be recycled
interstitial fluid used to remove metabolic wastes, can
be recycled
used dialyasing fluid becomes 'urine' urine is formed
passive transport only passive and active transport
about 15 hrs a week works 24/7
no bowman's capsule function Bowman's capsule
anti-clotting agent added to blood not required

present information to outline the general use of hormone replacement therapy in people who
cannot secrete aldosterone

HRT is a treatment given when a gland is not producing enough of a particular hormone (Addison's

The main substitute for aldosterone is fludrocortisone.
Hormone replacement for kidney function usually involves several hormones.
Addisons disease is where the adrenal cortex produces insufficient hormones.
Hormone replacement therapy can enable patients to manage symptoms (such as fluid retention
and high blood pressure).

Analyse information from secondary sources to compare and explain the differences in urine
concentration of terrestrial mammals, marine fish and freshwater fish

Terrestrial Mammals:
Water needs to be conserved
Convert ammonia into urea (less toxic) so animals can hold onto it for longer, helping to conserve
The concentration of uric acid changes with the availability of water, temperature and water loss

Marine Fish:
Hypertonic (high salt concentration) environment
Fish continually drinks water to maintain hydrated and excretes ammonia in concentrated

Freshwater Fish:
Hypotonic (high levels of water) environment
To reduce amount of water on system, freshwater fish secrete urine in large, dilute amounts

use available evidence to explain the relationship between the conservation of water and the
production and excretion of concentrated nitrogenous wastes in a range of Australian insects and
terrestrial mammals

the direct result of amino acid breakdown (deamination) and is a waste product of all organisms
very water soluble, very toxic, and must be removed quickly, or changed to a less toxic form

Aquatic Animals and Fish:
directly release ammonia into the environment through the gills
uses a lot of water, but they have no need to conserve it.

Terrestrial Animals:
change ammonia into less toxic forms and release it periodically
Mammals change it into urea and release it as urine in concentrated amounts
(eg) Kangaroos, koalas

Birds change ammonia into uric acid, a whitish paste which uses hardly any water
lighter than using urea, and helps in flight

Insects change ammonia to uric acid
(eg) psyllids

process and analyse information from secondary sources and use available evidence to discuss
processes used by different plants for salt regulation in saline environments

Halophytes: plants that can tolerate high salt levels (eg. estuaries)

Grey Mangroves
Salt Exclusion: Special glands in the mangroves actively exclude the salt from the water, so that
the water absorbed has a lower salt concentration than the water in the environment.
Salt Accumulation: Salt is accumulated in old leaves that drop off, so that the salt is out of the
plants system
Salt Excretion: Salt can be excreted from the underside of the leaves of the mangrove plants; salt
crystals form under the leaves

Salt Accumulation: stores excess salt in swollen leaf bases, which drop off, ridding the plant of salt

perform a first-hand investigation to gather information about structures in plants that assist in the
conservation of water

Aim: to gather information about features of plants which help minimise water loss

Method: examine leaves, stems and roots of Australian sclerophyll plants (eg. gum trees, banksias and
acacias) for features which may assist in minimising water loss

Results and Conclusion:

Gum trees:
Small, narrow leaves reduced surface area exposure to sunlight, thus, reduced transpiration rate
Drooping leaves the leaves are hidden from sunlight during the heat of the day (when the sun is
above), but is able to capture the sunlight for photosynthesis during dusk when the ambient
temperature is cooler, thus, reducing the amount of transpired water
Thick, waxy cuticles makes it harder for transpiration to occur from the leafs surface
Fewer stomates on their leaves - limits water loss from transpiration as there is less access to water
from the lower epidermis
Reflective leaf surface the sunlight is reflected off the surface of the leaf, therefore, reducing
water loss through transpiration

Leaves are small - reduced surface area exposure to sunlight, thus, reduced transpiration
Fewer stomates on their leaves and stomates are sunken - limits water loss from transpiration as
there is less access to water from the lower epidermis

Leaves are small - reduced surface area exposure to sunlight, thus, reduced transpiration
Leaves and stem are hairy allows the plant to catch water
Fewer stomates on their leaves - limits water loss from transpiration as there is less access to water
from the lower epidermis