Cellular respiration Essay

This essay has a total of 384 words and 2 pages.

cellular respiration



Cellular respiration begins with glucose. Glucose is the primary fuel used in glycolysis,
the first stage of cellular respiration. This molecule is found in the gel-like substance
called cytoplasm that fills the cell. In glycolysis, glucose undergoes phosphorylation by
ATP. The ATP is converted back to ADP. The glucose molecule is rearranged and undergoes
a second phosphorylation by ATP. The second ATP is also converted back to ADP. Glucose,
a six-carbon molecule, is split into 2 three-carbon molecules of PGAL. As oxidation takes
place, NAD picks up a hydrogen atom from each molecule to form 2NADH. Phosphorylation
takes place again. For each molecule, 2ADP combine with two phosphates to form a total of
4 ATP, and pyruvic acid molecules are formed. A net gain of 2 ATP have been formed. As
the pyruvic acid molecules make their way toward the mitochondria, two more molecules of
NADH are formed. A carbon atom also breaks off and combines with two oxygen atoms to
produce the waste product carbon dioxide. As a result of these reactions, each pyruvic
acid molecule is transformed into a two-carbon compound called an acetyl group. The two
acetyl groups combine with a molecule of coenzyme A each to form two acetyl coenzyme A
molecules. These molecules are processed in a complex pathway called the Krebs cycle. As
the Krebs cycle progresses through both pyruvic acid molecules, six molecules of NADH, two
molecules of ATP, and additional carbon dioxide are all formed. FAD picks up a hydrogen
atom from each pyruvic acid molecule, and a total of 2 FAD2 are formed. NADH and FAD2
transport their hydrogen atoms and electrons to the electron transport chain. The
Continues for 1 more page >>




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