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a series of chemical reactions in which the product of one reaction is consumed in the next reaction
biochemical pathway
the intitial reactions in photosynthesis including the absorption of light by photsystes 1 and 2, the passage of electrons along the electron transport chains, the production of NADPH and O 2, and the synthesis of ATP through chemiosmosis
light reactions
a stack of thylakoids in a chloroplast
in plants, the solution that surrounds the thylakoids in a chloroplast
the protion of sunlight perceived by the human eye as various colors
visible spectrum
the distance between crests in a wave
in plants, a compound that absorbs light and imparts color
a class of light-absorbing pigments used in photsynthiesis
a pigment that absorbs light energy and transfers energy to chlorophyll a in photosynthesis
accessory pigment
a light-absorbing coupound that functions as an accessory pigment in photosynthesis
in plants, a unit of serveral hundred chlorophyll molecules and cartenoid pigment molecules in the thylakoid membrane
a molecule in the thylakoid membrane that accepts the electrons that chlorophyll a loses in the light reactions
primary electron acceptor
an enzyme that catalyzes the synthesis of ATP from ADP and phosphate
ATP synthase
a process in chloroplasts and mitochondria in whic the movement of protons down their concentration gradient across a membrane is coupled to the synthesis of ATP
the incorporation of carbon dioxide into organic coumpounds
carbon fixation
ribulose bisphosphate; a five-carbon carbohydrate that combines with CO2 to form two molecules of PGA in the first step of the Calvin cycle
phosphoglycerate; a three-carbon molecule formed in the first step of the Calvin cycle
glyceraldehyde phosphate; a three-carbon molecule formed in the second step of the Calvin cycle that can leave the cycle and be used to make other organic compounds
a plant that fixes carbon exclusively through the Calvin cycle, named for the three-carbon compound that is initially formed
C3 plants
a plant that incorporates CO2 into four-carbon compounds
C4 plant
one of many small pores usaually located on the underside of a leaf; aids in gas exchange
crassulacean acid metabolism; a biochemical pahway in certain plants in which CO2 is incorporated into organic acids at night and released for fixation in the Calvin cycle during the day

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