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The Cell: A Protein Factory

Understanding the Processes of Cellular Respiration and Photosynthesis

1) Cellular Respiration

In order for a factory to function, it requires power in the form of electricity. This
electricity is produced in a furnace or boiler room. Cells also need power to perform
the tasks that make life possible. In cells, the boiler room where power is
produced is known as the ___________________________.

The mitochondria are located in the cytoplasm of both plant and animal cells. They
have an outer membrane, an inner membrane with folds called _____________, and
fluid in the cristae which is called the _______________.

In a factory, power may be generated from hydrocarbons such as coal, oil, or

natural gas. However, in order for the hydrocarbons to produce useable energy for
the factory (in the form of electricity), a series of steps is required. First, heat energy
is created by the burning or combustion of the hydrocarbons, which is then used to
boil water, producing steam. The steam is then used to turn large turbines, which
generates electricity.

In cells, energy is also produced through a combustion reaction, in which glucose

(sugar) is combined with oxygen to produce carbon dioxide and water.

This process is known as __________________________________________.

Just as several processes are required to generate electricity for a factory from coal
or oil, several steps are involved in the process of cellular respiration. And just as
energy in the factory must be in the form of electricity to be useable, cells also
require a specific form of energy. This energy is in the form of a molecule called
adenosine triphosphate, or _____________.

There are two types of cellular respiration:

AEROBIC (with oxygen) and ANAEROBIC (without oxygen).

Aerobic respiration produces ________molecules of ATP for every molecule of


Anaerobic respiration produces __________ molecules of ATP for every molecule of

Both begin in the cytoplasm, where glucose is broken down into two smaller
molecules called PYRUVATE. This process generates 2 molecules of ATP.

In anaerobic conditions, this is followed by the generation of lactic acid through a

process called ________________________________.

In aerobic conditions, fermentation does not occur. Instead, the process continues
with the oxidation of pyruvate molecules in the inner membrane of the
mitochondria, followed by the transport of electrons across the membrane. These
processes generate an additional 36 molecules of ATP.

The ATP can then be used by the cell to build proteins and perform all of the
necessary duties to sustain life, just as electricity allows factories to operate and
build their products.

2) Photosynthesis
Some factories also harness energy from sunlight through solar panels. Again, this
energy is converted into electricity a form of power that the factory can use.
Similarly, in plants, light energy is converted into a form that can be used by the
plant cells (ATP), which is then used to produce carbohydrates.

This is called _____________________________.

This process is essentially the reverse of cellular respiration.

Photosynthesis occurs in the _________________________of plant cells.

Light energy (photons) from the sun is absorbed by a pigment called CHLOROPHYLL,
located in discs called THYLAKOIDS. The thylakoids are found in stacks called

Like cellular respiration, photosynthesis has multiple parts. The first part involves
light-dependent reactions, which occur in the membranes of the thylakoids. The
second part involves light-independent reactions, which occur in the stroma.

The light-dependent part of photosynthesis begins when photons from the sun are
absorbed by molecules of chlorophyll in the thylakoids, exciting electrons. The
energy is then converted to ATP through a series of reactions. The ATP is then used
in the light-independent reactions in the stroma to make carbohydrate molecules
(glucose) from CO2.