Photosynthesisand Cellular Respiration Process
Photosynthesisis defined as the process through which organisms with chlorophyllcan convert light energy from the sun into chemical energy, whichpowers the entire trophic food chains and food webs on Earth. On theother, cellular respiration process is defined as is a set ofreactions taking place in the living organisms` cells to convertenergy from biochemical activities into ATP (adenosine triphosphate)and later releases waste products (Hopkins, 2006). The paper seeks totrace the path taken by carbon dioxide through the photosyntheticprocess and then through cellular respiration. Here, the taskinvolves tracing the path of what is an imaginary radioactivelyindicated carbon atom. The carbon atom will begin its journey as partof the carbon dioxide molecule in the atmosphere and will end up as asection of the muscle protein in the human arm.
Tobegin with, carbon dioxide molecule from the air combines with waterthrough the process of photosynthesis in the presence of light energyfrom the sun to form glucose. The by-product of this reaction, whichis oxygen, is released. Once this carbon dioxide molecule isintegrated into the photosynthetic process, the glucose is brokendown into two reaction groups, which include the "lightreaction" requiring light and another reaction, "Calvincycle" (Hopkins, 2006). Once the photosystems have finished, thelight-independent reaction (Calvin Cycle) starts. It is at this pointthat the carbon atoms undergo rearranging process in sometimes tocreate a series of glucose molecules. Here, sunlight`selectromagnetic energy is converted into chemical energy insidechlorophyll, which contains cells belonging to photosyntheticorganisms.
Once the glucose molecule is in the chloroplast, the sunlight in theCalvin cycle converts this glucose molecule into chemical energy,which is made available in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP),which according to Hopkins (2006), is the main molecule that storesenergy in living organism. This ATP molecule, which existed before asa glucose molecule, is then transported to all parts of thechloroplast. The process facilitates the production of chemicalenergy, which is necessary for powering other reactions of metabolismin the plant. One this ATP molecule is stored in the chloroplast inplants the process awaits movement from the autotrophs, and in thiscase, to humans (Hopkins, 2006). The animal cell then takes in thecarbon-based molecules (glucose molecules) and the oxygen for theprocess of cellular respiration.
The transfer of this ATP molecule in the form of a glucose moleculein the chloroplast is through human ingestion into the system. Thismolecule is available in autotrophs and heterotrophs having acquiredthem from autotrophs. In eukaryotic cells, the cellular reactionsbegin with glycolysis products are moved into the mitochondria. Oncethe molecule is in the human mitochondria, which is a section of thecells where all the energy goes through all the chemical reactions inthe process of cellular respirations (Hopkins, 2006). The Krebscycle, which is a collection of metabolic pathways, in themitochondria undergoes further breaking of chemical bonds. Theglucose molecule is turned into Pyruvate. The carbon molecule isrearranged and transformed many times.
The electron transport chain process occurs, and many ATP isgenerated in the mitochondria. Here what follows is that the ATP isthen applied all through the cell and in the entire body for all thebody energy needs. The entire cycle sees the transfer of the carbonatom, repeatedly. Without both Calvin and Krebs cycles, humans wouldbe functioning differently due to lack of energy generated (Hopkins,2006). Following the production of ATP, some of them are transferredto the human muscle protein to aid in the proper functioning of themuscle.
Hopkins,W. G. (2006). Photosynthesis and Respiration. New York:Infobase Pub.