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Cellular Respiration and Photosynthesis Question

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Cellular Respiration and Photosynthesis co-exist as paired processes. Photosynthesis converts light energy into organic molecules such as carbohydrates. These molecules are picked up and utilized as fuel sources in organisms that employ Cellular Respiration for production of ATP and CO2.

Although it appears that Photosynthesis has preceded Cellular Respiration by billions of years, the processes share many structural features. Utilize the library, Internet, and any other resources available to complete the following:

Create a table comparing and contrasting the two processes. Include in your comparison variables such as organism type, energy source, cellular location, substrates/reactants/products, full and balanced chemical reaction, carrier molecules, and any other parameter you find relevant.

Apart from its essential role in cellular respiration, the mitochondrion is thought to be implicated in a variety of disease states as well as the process of aging. The mitochondrion contains its own circular DNA molecule(s) (termed mtDNA) which largely encodes for proteins localized to the mitochondrion itself. Please provide a hypothesis and suggest an experiment to test the relationship between mtDNA and human aging. Propose a direction for future research and drug development for targeting mtDNA to combat the ageing process.

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Objective: Explain the processes of photosynthesis and cellular respiration.
Identify plant and animal cell structure and functions.
Describe the relationship between chemistry and the characteristics of living things.
Understand human organ systems and their basic functions.
Apply critical thinking skills to the content of the course.

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Solution Summary

This solution provides a chart comparing information on energy consideration, input energy, oxidation and reduction, cell type, energy source, electron transport, subcellular localization and coenzymes in 456 words in an attached Word document. It also discusses mtDNA and aging in 855 words.

Solution Preview

For the chart comparing photosynthesis and cellular respiration, see the attached Word document. Nevertheless, please be aware that this is a summary only, and you will still need to be able to understand and explain the details. Basically, you should still study the overall processes of cellular respiration and photosynthesis so that you'll be able to understand how these points that I've outlined in the chart for you fit together.

Stephen Allen
OTA 104330

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mtDNA and Aging

We could hypothesize that when mtDNA gets damaged sufficiently, the ability of its genes to produce replacement proteins for cellular respiration is significantly hampered. As a result, there is an impairment in the ability of the cell to produce new copies of old and worn out proteins that need to be replaced. When enough of these old proteins don't get replaced with new versions, cellular respiration gets significantly damaged and the cell begins to die, i.e. age.

How can we test this? With respect to mtDNA and aging, take a look at the article entitled "Support for mtDNA aging theory" at http://www.the-scientist.com/news/display/23324. You shouldn't find it too difficult to understand as its written in non-technical language. The basic point is that certain regions of the brain that have deteriorated more rapidly than other regions have defective cellular respiration going on in addition to having more ...

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