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Photosynthesis and Cellular respiration description

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This solution describes the processes of photosynthesis and cellular respiration, as well as how they are linked between plants and animals based on the reactants and products (water, carbon dioxide, glucose and oxygen) of both pathways. Include a description of how energy is transferred from sunlight to ATP, from ATP to sugars, and from sugars to cells.

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Solution Summary

This solution is comprised of a detailed description of photosynthesis and cellular respiration. It compares both processes using technical terms that are common in a COLLEGE LEVEL FRESHMAN biology class. A brief definition of the TECHNICAL terms is included for greater understanding.

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The sunlight strikes the leaf and an electron gets excited, instead of falling back down to the ground state, it gets captured by P680 a special electron acceptor in photosystem II. This reaction requires water as a source of electrons. Water is split in the process, releasing diatomic oxygen as a byproduct.ATP is produced from ADP in the process. The electron then travels through a series of redox(oxidation reduction) reactions, similiar to the electron transport chain in cellular respiration. From there the electron enters photosystem I and another electron acceptor called P700 captures the electron and excites it to still a higher energy state. At this point, the electron travels through another series of redox reactions and NADP+ is used to form NADPH, which is an important compound used in the light independent reactions also known as the dark reactions. This energy is used in the light independent reactions.
Some electrons enter the light reactions through photosystem I and cycle through this reaction center. The electrons used in this process are used to produce ATP only. The light reactions occur in the grana of the chloroplast.


NADPH is used in the light independent reactions to form macromolecules. This is also called the Calvin Cycle. In the first step of this process, Carbon dioxide is captured by Ribulose bisPhosphate (RUBP) to form 3 Phosphoglycerate, via a series of unstable intermediate compounds. The Phosphoglycerate then continues through the ...

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