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What is a simple mixture that can demonstrate the fermentation process like that in wine?
Question Date: 2005-03-27
Answer 1:

In the late 1700s Lavoisier discovered that the end products of fermentation were carbon dioxide (CO2) and ethyl alcohol (C2H5OH).

In 1810 Joseph-Louis Gay-Lussac discovered that sugars from grapes fermented into wine (CO2 and ethyl alcohol). We now know that the yeast aids in the production of enzymes, acting as catalysts to speed up the reaction. But this fermentation process has a simple reaction:
sugar --> carbon dioxide and ethyl alcohol
glucose (a sugar: C6H12O6) --> 2CO2 + 2C2H5OH.

Later, in 1866, Louis Pasteur explained lactic acid fermentation. This is what happens in our muscles when they are under great exertion and oxygen is not enough to keep up with the muscles' needs. (Lactic acid is what makes your muscles feel stiff or sore the day after working out). So for this type of fermentation you have:
pyruvic acid (CH3COCOOH) + 2H+ broken down into lactic acid (CH3CHOHCOOH).

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