Glossary of How Cells

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cellular respiration
The most prevalent and efficient catabolic pathway for the production of ATP, in which oxygen is consumed as a reactant along with the organic fuel.
The entire contents of the cell, exclusive of the nucleus, and bounded by the plasma membrane.
An organelle in eukaryotic cells that serves as the site of cellular respiration.
releases free energy when its phosphate bonds are hydrolyzed.
The loss of electrons from a substance involved in a redox reaction.
The gaining of electrons by a substance involved in a redox reaction.
The splitting of glucose into pyruvate
Krebs cycle
completes the metabolic breakdown of glucose molecules to carbon dioxide
electron transport chain
A sequence of electron-carrier molecules (membrane proteins) that shuttle electrons during the redox reactions that release energy used to make ATP.
The production of ATP using the energy of hydrogen-ion gradients across membranes to phosphorylate ADP
hydrogen ion
A single proton with a charge of +1.
A class of proteins serving as catalysts, chemical agents that change the rate of a reaction without being consumed by the reaction.
substrate-level phosphorylation
The formation of ATP by directly transferring a phosphate group to ADP from an intermediate substrate in catabolism.
acetyl CoA
The entry compound for the Krebs cycle in cellular respiration; formed from a fragment of pyruvate attached to a coenzyme.
A three-dimensional biological polymer constructed from a set of 20 different monomers called amino acids.
The tendency for an atom to pull electrons toward itself.
mitochondrial matrix
The compartment of the mitochondrion enclosed by the inner membrane and containing enzymes and substrates for the Krebs cycle.
ATP synthase
A cluster of several membrane proteins found in the mitochondrial cristae that function in chemiosmosis with adjacent electron transport chains, using the energy of a hydrogen-ion concentration gradient to make ATP.
A catabolic process that makes a limited amount of ATP from glucose without an electron transport chain.
The reduced form of nicotinamide that is one of the products of glycolysis.

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