Glossary of AU Biology 110 Chapter 10

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A series of chemical reactions and electron transfers that converts the energy of light into the chemical energy stored in glucose.
A chlorophyll-containing organelle in plant cells, in which photosynthesis occurs.
light-dependent reactions
The set of reactions that require light and that result in the production of oxygen from water during photosynthesis.
light-independent reactions
The set of reactions that do not require light and that result in the production of sugar from carbon dioxide during photosynthesis.
carbon fixation
The part of the Calvin cycle in which carbon atoms are extracted from atmospheric carbon dioxide and used to make simple organic compounds that eventually become glucose.
Calvin cycle
The light-independent component of photosynthesis, in which carbon dioxide is reduced to form sugars.
The enzyme that catalyzes the first step of the Calvin cycle during photosynthesis. This step is the addition of one molecule of carbon dioxide to the 5-carbon sugar ribulose bisphosphate (RuBP)
ribulose bisphosphate (RuBP)
The initial reactant in the Calvin cycle, to which the enzyme rubisco attaches one molecule of carbon dioxide. The 6-carbon compound that results immediately splits to form two molecules of 3-phosphoglycerate (3PG).
An opening on the surface of a leaf or stem that allows gases such as carbon dioxide and oxygen to enter and leave plant tissue. The pore and two bordering guard cells constitute a stoma.
guard cell
One of a pair of bean-shaped cells that border a pore. Together, the pore and two guard cells constitute a stoma.
(plural: stomata) An apparatus on the surface of a leaf or stem, consisting of a pore and two bordering guard cells, through which gases are exchanged for photosynthesis.
A series of light-driven chemical reactions that consumes oxygen and releases carbon dioxide, basically reversing the work of photosynthesis. Photorespiration usually occurs in hot, dry environments when plants must keep their stomata closed to avoid water loss through evaporation.
C3 plant
A plant in which the pathway for carbon fixation in the Calvin cycle produces 3-carbon sugars.
C4 plant
A plant in which the pathway for carbon fixation in the Calvin cycle produces 4-carbon sugars.
PEP carboxylase
The enzyme that catalyzes the reaction that produces 4-carbon sugars in the C4 pathway for carbon fixation.
The 4-carbon compound produced in the C4 pathway for carbon fixation when PEP carboxylase catalyzes the addition of one carbon dioxide molecule to a 3-carbon sugar.
mesophyll cell
A cell near the surface of a leaf, in which PEP carboxylase is commonly found.
bundle-sheath cell
One of the cells surrounding the vascular tissue in the interior of a leaf. Rubisco is commonly found in bundle-sheath cells.
CAM (crassulacean acid metabolism) pathway
A pathway for carbon fixation in environments that are so hot and dry that plants routinely keep their stomata closed all day. The stomata open at night, taking in huge quantities of carbon dioxide. The carbon dioxide is temporarily fixed to sugars and stored in the cells. During the day, the sugars are processed in reactions that release the carbon dioxide and feed the Calvin cycle.
cellular respiration
A common and efficient pathway to produce ATP, which involves a transfer of electrons from a reduced compound to an electron transport chain, and ultimately to an electron acceptor.
A flattened, membrane-bound disk inside a plant chloroplast. A stack of thylakoids is called a granum.
A green pigment molecule found in plant cells that absorbs light energy to power photosynthesis.
A complex of molecules and enzymes in plant chloroplasts that takes part in photosynthesis.
A small, hydrophobic molecule that carries electrons across the thylakoid membrane during photosynthesis.
A small protein that shuttles electrons from photosystem II to photosystem I during photosynthesis.
A molecule, very similar to chlorophyll, that acts as an electron acceptor in photosynthesis.
redox reaction
A reaction in which one substance loses electrons (is oxidized), while another substance gains electrons (is reduced).
ATP synthase
An ATP-synthesizing enzyme found in the membranes of chloroplasts and mitochondria.
The addition of a phosphate group to a molecule, commonly to a protein to control its shape or function.
The fluid between the outer membrane of a chloroplast and its thylakoid disks.
glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate (G3P)
A phosphorylated sugar produced during the reduction phase of the Calvin cycle.

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