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Examville.com - Krebs Cycle and Oxidative Phosphorylation

Examville.com - Krebs Cycle and Oxidative Phosphorylation



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Published by: Examville.com on Feb 02, 2009
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Krebs cycle and Oxidative Phosphorylation
1. Introduction to Krebs cycle 2. Reactions: An Outline 3. Acids of Krebs Cycle 4. Regulation of Krebs Cycle 5. Electron Transport Chain and Oxidative Phosphorylation 6. Disorders due to Insufficiency 1. Introduction to Krebs cycle 
Every cell in the body needs energy to survive. Mitochondrion inside the cell is known asthe power house of the cell and supplies the necessary energy for a cell to function.Mature blood cells lack mitochondria. Rest of all the cells contains approximately 500 –2000 mitochondria and their prime most function is to alter the energy contained in thenutrient molecules in to adenosine triphosphate (ATP) molecules.ATP is the universal energy-yielding molecule, and is essential for the enzymaticactivities which carry out a variety of cellular functions.
Citric Acid Cycle 
In the year 1937, Hans A. Krebs was the first to clarify the method of cells convertingfood constituents into energy. Krebs proposed a specific metabolic pathway called as‘Citric Acid Cycle’ which involves the oxidation of the basic components of food likecarbohydrates, protein and fats for yielding energy.Krebs cycle is one of the most fundamental processes in respiration. It can be definedas a chemical cycle engaging eight steps that completes the metabolic breakdown of glucose molecules into carbon dioxide. This metabolic process occurs within themitochondrion of the eukaryotic cells.Oxygen is an essential factor for carrying out this energy conversion. Hence our bodysupplies oxygen to all the tissues for usage through mitochondria.
The circulatory system plays a major role in eliminating the carbon dioxide formed in thetissues after the process of cellular respiration (Consumption of oxygen bymitochondria). Krebs cycle is also called as Tricarboxylic acid cycle.Tricarboxylic acid cycle (Krebs cycle or Citric acid cycle) is considered as the centralmetabolic pathway and occurs in all aerobic organisms.In presence of oxygen, acetyl-CoA molecule is metabolized into citric acid inside themitochondria and then undergoes a complex series of biological oxidations. This resultsin the production of free hydrogen ions. At this stage in the Krebs cycle, a net result of two ATP molecules is released.
Oxidative Phosphorylation 
The hydrogen ions then enter a biochemical sequence called oxidative phosphorylation.It is highly efficient in generating energy in presence of oxygen.Oxidative phosphorylation results in 36 molecules of ATP during a sequence of stepsthat combine hydrogen electrons to molecular oxygen to form water. Therefore, eachmolecule of citric acid that enters the Krebs cycle will generate a total of 38 molecules of ATP and finally gets oxidized to carbon dioxide (CO
).Almost all the acetyl groups resulting from food molecules are oxidized into to CO
O. Simultaneously NAD (Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide) molecule is reduced toNADH.Glucose, the simplest carbohydrate in our body is first metabolized into pyruvic acidand then into acetyl coenzyme A. The breakdown of the glucose molecule forms twomolecules of ATP for energy in the Embden Meyerhof pathway (glycolysis).Similarly, amino acids and some chained fatty acids can also be metabolized intoKrebs intermediates and enter the cycle at a number of points.When oxygen is unavailable to carry out Krebs cycle, the body shifts its energyproduction from the Krebs cycle to glycolysis. Glycolysis is very less efficient whencompared to Krebs cycle.
Reactions: An Outline 
Glycolysis results in two molecules of Pyruvate. These molecules are transportedacross both mitochondrial membranes and enter into the matrix.Pyruvate is a three Carbon molecule and a CO
is removed from the Pyruvate (3C),resulting it as a 2C molecule. This 2C molecule enters the formal phase of the CitricAcid Cycle. The 2C molecule combines with coenzyme A to form Acetyl CoA (2C).Coenzyme A then attaches the 2C molecule to an oxaloacetate (4C), to form Citrate(6C).2C + 4C
The coenzyme A is the significant enzyme that joins the 2C molecule with the 4C. ACO
(1C) is removed from Citrate (6C), leaving a 5C molecule. Again a CO
(1C) isremoved from the 5C molecule, leaving a 4C molecule. The 4C molecule is thenconverted into oxaloacetate (4C).This process continues as a cycle, so that the resulting products are the same as theinitial reactants. Krebs cycle starts with oxaloacetate and also ends with oxaloacetate.The unique glucose molecule from glycolysis is now completely broken down intoCO
.The energy released during this phase is detained in a total of 2 ATP and 8 NADHand 2 FADH
.Totally energy yielded will be a total of 4 ATP, 10 NADH, and 2 FADH

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