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 There are two major types of metabolic reactions. The word
metabolic means biochemical.
 The two types are called anabolic and catabolic.

Anabolic reactions are

basically taking what’s
in your food and
forming large complex
molecules. (athletes will
take anabolic steroids for

When sugars are joined together to create glycogen, that’s

anabolism. When you join amino acids to make proteins,
like in your muscles, that’s an anabolic reaction. When
fatty acids in your food are joined to form a triglyceride,
that’s an anabolic reaction.

Catabolic reactions are

the breakdown of
organic molecules for
energy. Breaking down
sugars for energy, fat for
energy, and so forth are all

To remember what catabolic means, think a CATastrophe

where things are falling apart and breaking apart. You
could also think of CATS that tear apart your furniture.

 Anabolic reactions are associated with growth. Catabolic are

associated with the release of energy and energy production. At any
moment both reactions are occurring. Collectively all of these
reactions are called your metabolism.

 The ATP molecule is a

nucleotide derivative. It
consists of three components;
a purine base (adenine), a
pentose sugar (ribose), and
three phosphate groups,
which attach to the 5’ carbon
of the pentose sugar.
The laundromat
= your body
 Cellular respiration is like a change
machine: you’re turning sugars into ATP
so it will be a usable form of energy. If
you go to a coin operated laundromat,
they all seem to run on quarters for some
reason. So you might say, “I don’t have
any quarters but I want to wash my
clothes and I have a $10 bill.” You put
your $10 bill into the change machine
and you get 40 quarters and now you
could use the coin operated washers and
dryers. All the chemical reactions in
living things run off of these quarters
(ATP). They don’t run off $10 bills
 One glucose will give you as much as 38
ATP, similar to the way a $10 bill will
give you 40 quarters. A fat molecule is
more like a $100 bill because it has that
much more energy.
ATP from cell respiration is immediately
available as a source of energy in the cell.

 Cells require energy for three main types of activity.

 ● Synthesizing large molecules like DNA, RNA and proteins.
 ● Pumping molecules or ions across membranes by active
 ● Moving things around inside the cell, such as chromosomes,
vesicles, or in muscle cells the protein bres that cause muscle

 Cellular respiration is the process by which organic

compounds (preferably glucose) are broken apart, releasing energy
that is used to produce ATP molecules.

Cells need to have ATP because it’s the gasoline that

powers all living things. ATP is a high energy nucleotide
which acts as an instant source of energy within the cell.

 In order to make ATP, you need food (sugar) and oxygen. If you
don’t have food, you can’t make ATP and you’re going to die. Even
if I brought in all the food in the world and then I diabolically suck
all the oxygen out of this room, you’re still going to die. You need
oxygen to unlock the energy that’s in the food. Cellular respiration
also explains why we are breathing oxygen and why we exhale
carbon dioxide.

 In essence, the energy that was in covalent bonds of the glucose

molecule is being released. In actuality, this process requires several
steps because the sugar is broken down by baby steps, little by little,
and is catalyzed many enzymes and coenzymes.

 There are two main types of cell respiration:

 Anaerobic respiration involves the partial breakdown of glucose in
the cytosol for a small yield of ATP.
 Aerobic respiration utilizes oxygen to completely break down
glucose in the mitochondria for a larger ATP yield.