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Science of Living Systems


What is Respiration?
The process of converting Food Energy into Chemical Energy (ATP).

ATPs are used to power the metabolic processes.

It is almost the reverse process of photosynthesis, which requires light energy for producing food, using carbon dioxide and producing oxygen. Respiration is the chemical process opposite of photosynthesis because it releases energy from food, and uses oxygen and produces carbon dioxide.

Photosynthesis vs Respiration
Produces food Stores energy Uses water Uses CO2 Releases O2 Occurs in light Occurs only in cells containing chloroplasts

Uses food Releases energy Produces water
Produces CO2 Uses O2 Occurs at all time Occurs in all cells

The Overall Equation for Respiration

A common fuel molecule for cellular respiration is glucose



Carbon dioxide



Oxidation [Glucose loses electrons (and hydrogens)]



Carbon dioxide


Reduction [Oxygen gains electrons (and hydrogens)]

What is ATP?
Energy currency of the cell Adenosine Triphosphate 5-Carbon sugar (Ribose) Nitrogenous base (Adenine) 3 Phosphate groups The chemical bonds that link the phosphate groups together are Covalent high energy bonds When a phosphate group is broken down to form ADP and Pi, small packets of energy are released.

What are the Stages of Cellular Respiration?

Glycolysis Krebs Cycle Electron Transport Chain (ETC)/

Oxidative Phosporylation

Where Does Cellular Respiration Take Place?

It actually takes place in two parts of the cell:
Glycolysis occurs in the Cytoplasm or Cytosol
Krebs Cycle & ETC Take place in the Mitochondria

Review of Mitochondria Structure

About 1 micron diameter Smooth outer Membrane Folded inner membrane Folds called Cristae Space inside cristae called the Matrix

Intermembrane space

Cellular Respiration


Glyco = sweet Lysis= splitting

Embden-Meyerhoff-Parnas (EMP) Pathway Anaerobic (does not require Oxygen) 10 steps all occurring in cytosol or cytoplasm


Glycolysis Summary
Takes place in the Cytosol (cytoplasm) Doesnt Use Oxygen

Requires input of 2 ATP

Glucose splits into two molecules of Pyruvate or Pyruvic Acid Produces 2 NADH and 4 ATP Net Production: 2 NADH and 2 ATP

Pyruvic acid from glycolysis is first converted into Acetyl-CoA

Pyruvate dehydrogenase

Net Production: 2 NADH Releases 2 CO2

Krebs cycle

Krebs cycle- was discovered by

Sir Hans Krebs Also called Citric acid cycle or Tricarboxylic Acid (TCA) cycle Requires Oxygen (Aerobic) Takes place in matrix of mitochondria

Krebs Cycle Summary

Cyclical series of oxidation reactions Turns twice per glucose molecule

Each turn of the Krebs Cycle also produces 3NADH, 1FADH2, 1ATP and 2CO2 Therefore, For each Glucose molecule, the Krebs Cycle produces 6NADH, 2FADH2, 2ATP and 4CO2

Electron transport chain (ETC)

Discovered by Eugene Kennedy & Albert Lehninger (1948) Catalyzes a flow of electrons from NADH/ FADH2 to O2 1) direct transfer of electron as in the reduction of Fe3+ to Fe 2+ and Cu2+ to Cu+ 2) transfer as a hydrogen atom (H+ & e-) Electron transport is coupled with formation of proton gradient used for ATP synthesis

Electron transport chain (ETC)

Consists of 5 complexes: Complex I (NADH dehydrogenase) Complex II (Succinate dehydrogenase) Complex III (Ubiquinone-Cytochrome bc1 complex) Complex IV (Cytochrome oxidase) Complex V (ATP synthase)

Electron transport chain (ETC)

Complex I : NADH to Ubiquinone Complex II : Succinate to Ubiquinone Complex III :Ubiquinone to Cytochrome c Complex IV : Cytochrome c to Oxygen

The steps that transport protons from Intermembrane space to matrix establishing a proton chemiosmotic gradient. It is an energy-coupling mechanism that uses energy stored in the form of an H+ gradient across a membrane to generate ATP.


The F0 complex making up the proton pore is composed of three subunits, a, b, and c, in the proportion ab2c10-12. The F1 has nine subunits of five different types (33 ) Matrix The subunits undergoes three three coformational chages ( -empty, -ADP and ATP). The proton gradient causes the enzyme to release the newly synthesized ATP from its surface.


Intermembrane space

ATP synthase



ATP Synthesis
Inner mitochondrial membrane is impermeable to protons. Proton can reenter the matrix only through proton-specific channels (F0). The proton-motive force that drives protons back into the matrix provides the energy for ATP synthesis, catalysed by the F1 complex associated with F0.

Electron Transport Chain Summary

Occurs Across Inner Mitochondrial membrane Uses coenzymes NAD+ and FAD+ to accept e- from glucose NADH = 3 ATPs FADH2 = 2 ATPs 32 ATP Produced H2O Produced

Fate of PYRUVATE In the absence of oxygen: Fermentation


Pyruvate decarboxylase

Lactate dehydrogenase

NADH Alcohol dehydrogenase

Alcohol fermentation occurs in yeasts, and some bacteria

Lactic acid fermentation occurs in animal muscle cells, some fungi and bacteria to make yogurt

Occurs when O2 NOT present (anaerobic) Requires NADH generated by glycolysis Called Lactic Acid fermentation in muscle cells, some fungi and bacteria, produces lactic acid)

Called Alcoholic fermentation in yeast (produces carbon dioxide & ethanol)

Net Gain: only 2 ATP

Fate of Glucose
glycolysis (10 successive reactions) anaerobic conditions anaerobic conditions

2 Pyruvate
O2 aerobic conditions 2CO2

2 Lactate
Fermentation to lactate in vigorously contracting muscle, in erythrocytes, and in some microorganisms

2 Acetyl-CoA 2 Ethanol + 2CO2

Alcohol fermentation in yeast O2 citric acid cycle

4CO2 + 4H2O
Animal, plant, and many microbial cells under aerobic conditions

Efficiency of Aerobic Respiration

ADP-P bond releases -7.6 kcal/mol ATP when bond is broken Theoretical energy yield from burning 1mol glucose in a calorimeter = -686 kcal/mol Practical yield from burning 1mol of glucose in the cell with oxygen = 36ATP
36 ATP X -7.6 kcal/mol = -274 kcal/mol glucose 274/-686 kcal/mol X 100 = 40%


Efficiency of Anaerobic Respiration

ADP-P bond releases -7.6 kcal/mol ATP when bond is broken Theoretical energy yield from burning 1mol glucose in a calorimeter = -686 kcal/mol Practical yield from burning 1mol of glucose in the cell without oxygen = 2 ATP 2 ATP X -7.6 kcal/mol = -15.2 kcal/mol glucose 15.2/-686 kcal/mol X100 =


Cellular respiration can burn other kinds of molecules besides glucose

Diverse types of carbohydrates Fats Proteins







Fatty acids

Amino acids Amino groups



Krebs Cycle

Electron Transport

Some commercial use of fermentation: wine and beer.

Yeasts in the process of budding or reproducing.

Carbon dioxide in beer and cake- due to yeast fermentation