Functional Biology of Plants - Coursework Example

Comments (0) Cite this document
The author of this coursework under the title "Functional Biology of Plants" focuses on the process of photosynthesis. It is stated here that photosynthesis and respiration are complementary processes of energy conversion in plant and animal systems…
Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing
GRAB THE BEST PAPER93% of users find it useful
Functional Biology of Plants
Read TextPreview

Extract of sample "Functional Biology of Plants"

1. Explain how photosynthesis and respiration are linked in order to provide you with energy from the food you eat.
Photosynthesis and respiration are complementary processes of energy conversion in plant and animal systems. Cellular respiration involves cells utilizing carbon compounds together with oxygen to form high-energy molecules that fuel cellular activities (Audesirk, Audesirk & Byers, 2008). During this process, carbon dioxide, a by-product of the process, would be released into the air. On the other hand, plants would absorb this released carbon dioxide during photosynthesis and give out oxygen. This continuous cycle shows the interdependence of the two processes.
During photosynthesis, plants through chlorophyll capture sunlight energy and convert inorganic molecules of water and carbon dioxide into energy organic molecules. This occurs in two steps, namely, light-dependent and light-independent reactions. The light-dependent reaction is a step where electrons found in the chlorophyll get invoked and the active electrons get transferred to electron transport systems. On the other hand, light-independent reactions occur as a cycle of chemical reactions referred to as Calvin cycle. Audesirk et al. (2008) categorize this cycle into three steps, namely; carbon fixation, glyceraldehydes-3 phosphate, G3P, synthesis and the ribulose biphosphate, RuBP generation.
Carbon fixation entails carbon being assimilated from carbon dioxide into a larger molecule. A plant protein, referred to as rubisco, would then fix carbon in photosynthetic organisms and accept oxygen instead of carbon dioxide, CO2. This forms a CO2 molecule which combines with the RuBP molecule producing an unstable molecule containing six carbon molecules. This immediately splits into two molecules of phosphogyleric acid, PGA. In the G3P synthesis, various reactions cause the energy from adenosine triphosphate, ATP and NADPH to propagate the conversion of the six PGA molecules into six G3P molecules (Audesirk et al., 2008). G3P is a sugar with three carbon molecules. Finally, RuBP would be generated through reactions that utilize ATP produced due to the light reactions of the six G3P molecules. The regenerated RuBP serves as an important ingredient for the repetition of the Calvin cycle, causing the release of the last G3P molecule.
The energy from the sun captured by chloroplasts during photosynthesis enables glucose to be produced from CO2 and H2O, with oxygen being the by-product. Cells then break down this glucose, generating energy that gets captured and stored in ATP, an energy carrying molecule (Hodson & Bryant, 2012). The ATP would then carry energy to cells where it breaks off releasing energy. The resultant molecule, referred to as adenosine diphosphate, ADP could be converted further to adenosine monophosphate, AMP, releasing more energy. The released energy would be utilized for cellular functions. To fuel further activities, cells replenish the supply of ATP.
2. In the absence of oxygen, some cells and organisms can use glycolysis coupled to fermentation to produce energy from the sugar created by photosynthesis. Explain the role of fermentation in allowing an organism to generate energy for its cell(s) in the absence of oxygen.
In the absence of oxygen, cells exclusively rely on glycolysis so as to produce ATP. Here, fermentation would cause hydrogen atoms resulting from glycolysis to be donated to organic molecules. According to Audesirk et al. (2008), it allows NADH, a product of glycolysis, to revert back to nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, NAD. This process needs to be continuous for the sustainability of glycolysis. Through cellular respiration, organisms regenerate NAD, a process that encompasses energetic electrons in NAHD being given to the electron transport chain, ETC.
Organic molecule Reduced organic molecule
Nonetheless, oxygen would be required for this to occur. Thus, for organisms not to access oxygen, it would be mandatory for fermentation to take place. This could take place through lactic acid fermentation where pyruvate ferments to lactate. Alternatively, it could occur through alcoholic fermentation where electrons and H from NADH cause the conversion of pyruvate into CO2 and ethanol as opposed to lactate. This causes the release of NAD, making it available for acceptance of more high-energy electrons.
3. Cells use enzymes as biological catalysts to increase or accelerate the rate of reactions, such as those in photosynthesis of glycolysis. This allows reactions to occur under conditions that sustain life. Explain how an enzyme catalyzes a reaction. Include in your essay the three main steps of the cycle of enzyme-substrate interactions.
Enzymes are specialized catalytic proteins which alter the rate with which a chemical reaction occurs without getting consumed by the reaction (Hodson & Bryant, 2012). To catalyze a reaction, the enzymes first bind to a specific chemical reactant, known as substrates. These substrates only bind on restricted regions in the enzyme, referred to as active sites, and would be held in the interaction through a weak bonding. The selective combination of substrates, temporary chemical bonds, distorted existing bonds and substrate orientation promotes the occurrence of specific chemical reactions to particular enzymes. Resembling a lock and key interaction, it results in the formation of an enzyme-substrate complex. After this interaction, both the active site and the substrate change shape. In the second step referred to as catalysis by Audesirk et al. (2008), the substrate gets converted into a product. Finally, this product fails to fit into the active site as required, thus causing the enzyme to be free. These enzymes emerging from the reaction would be in their original states and could catalyze other reactions over and over again.
How is enzyme activity regulated by the cell?
Enzyme activity would be regulated by the cell through activation or inhibition as need be. Some enzymes would be inactivated and would only be activated under appropriate temperature and pH. Through a competitive inhibitor that competes for the active site with the substrate, the site becomes unavailable for the enzyme to bind with the substrate. Enzyme activity could also be subjected to allosteric regulation, defined by Audesirk et al. (2008) as the effect on protein’s biological functioning due to the presence of a compound that is not directly involved in the function (known as allosteric effectors) or enzyme regulation due to cooperative involvement between various binding sites. Non-competitive inhibitors block the active site away from action of enzyme or binding the enzyme at a varied location thus preventing the substrate from binding to it. To speed up a reaction, cells increase the amount of enzymes and decrease this amount when there is need to slow down a reaction.

Audesirk, T., Audesirk, G., & Byers, B. (2008). Biology: Life on earth with physiology (8th ed.). San Francisco, CA: Benjamin Cummings.
Hodson, M. J. & Bryant, J. A. (2012). Functional biology of plants. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons. Read More
Cite this document
  • APA
  • MLA
(“Functional Biology of Plants Coursework Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1000 words”, n.d.)
Retrieved from
(Functional Biology of Plants Coursework Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1000 Words)
“Functional Biology of Plants Coursework Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1000 Words”, n.d.
  • Cited: 0 times
Comments (0)
Click to create a comment or rate a document

CHECK THESE SAMPLES OF Functional Biology of Plants

Functional Foods

...?Functional Foods: An Enforced Need Vitamins and mineral added foods are very commonly available in market these days and the advertisement and labeling is made very attractive forcing the customers to buy these food products without knowing whether they require the additional vitamins and minerals or not. These foods with added minerals and vitamins are known as functional foods. Functional foods are prepared by manipulating the dietary composition of the ordinary foods in order to make them extra nutritious in terms of vitamins and minerals. This type of food materials are readily available in the market in the form of a number of food products i.e. juices, breakfasts, energy drinks,...
3 Pages(750 words)Essay


...and contribute to the process of evolution (O’Neil). 2. Explain energy flow in an ecosystem. Include examples An ecosystem comprises the living and non-living components within a given environment such as a pond, grassland or forest. The flow of energy is an integral part of the ecosystem which is necessary in order to facilitate the normal functioning of the ecosystem. The energy that enters the ecosystem undergoes transformation at different stages based on the processes involved in the system. Energy enters an ecosystem from the sun as light energy which is trapped by plants which are referred to as the primary producers. The energy then flows through the various trophic levels as primary producers...
3 Pages(750 words)Essay


..., the nucleus, and negatively charged particles called electrons that are found in orbits around the nucleus. Molecules are made up of two or more atoms, either of the same element or of two or more different elements, joined by one or more covalent chemical bonds. Cell1 In biology, it is the unit of structure and function of which all plants and animals are composed. The cell is the smallest unit in the living organism that is capable of integrating the essential life processes. Cells can be separated into two major groups—prokaryotes, cells whose DNA is not segregated within a well-defined nucleus surrounded by a membranous nuclear envelope, and eukaryotes, those with a...
2 Pages(500 words)Essay


...the patient breathe. While still negative of the disease, it is wise to pay attention on the prevention of the disease thru following good hygiene habits such as washing the hands frequently with warm soapy water, using separate drinking glasses and eating utensils, and coughing or sneezing into a tissue. Stay healthy and boost the immune system by eating healthy foods, sleep well, avoid smoking, exercise, reduce stress, and not drinking excessive alcohol (The Patient Education Institute, Inc., 2008). References Kimball, J.W. (2007). The Human Respiratory System. Biology. Last accessed online on April 10, 2009 at <> (2008). Pneumonia:...
2 Pages(500 words)Essay

Transgenic plants

...Transgenic plant Table of Contents Transgenic plant Table of Contents 2 Introduction 3 Process of manufacturing 3 Development in the transgenic techniques 4 Impact on environment 5 Conclusion 6 Referencing 6 Introduction The term “transgenic plant” refers to those plants which have gene or genes that are been transferred from other species. The term is used specifically for those plants which are created in the laboratory by the use of recombination DNA. The plants containing transgenes are often called “genetically modified crops”. The main idea behind the whole process is to produce a variety which has a characteristic different from...
3 Pages(750 words)Essay

Flowering Plants

... as a structural xylem for that promotes conductivity of water through the plants. Some of the plants also seasonally shed their leaves to adapt to water scarcity (Solomon, Berg and martin, 2010). The wide adaptation features that promote reproduction, germination, and survival of the flowering plants therefore explain their higher level of success than other terrestrial plants. References Alford, D. (2004). Preliminary biology. Glebe, NSW: Pascal Press Solomon, E., Berg, L. and Martin, D. (2010). Biology. Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning Thorpe, S. and Thorpe, E. (2009). The Pearson general students manual 2009, 1/e. New Delhi, India: Pearson Education India... Flowering plants Terrestrial flowering...
1 Pages(250 words)Essay

Functional Systems

...Functional Systems Functional Systems Affiliation This paper is based on scenario of The Lynx Company, “which makes use of a functional system for their sales system. It takes the orders from their salesman in the field, processes those orders in the office, sends the information to accounting, and distributes the pick orders to the warehouse for picking and delivery. Without a doubt, the system has been a great success for The Lynx Company.” As demonstrated in figure1, functional systems are used to support one functional area within a specific organization by increasing its internal efficiency and effectiveness. Basically, the Lynx Company is using the...
2 Pages(500 words)Case Study

Plants assignment

...Importance of plants in solving real world problems Mosses and ferns can be described as an important foundation for the forest ecosystem as they help prevent erosion by creating a carpet on the forest floor. They are also important in maintaining the ocean ecosystem as they help provide oxygen into the sea; without them, the animals in the oceans would automatically die. Ferns are important as they help in the provision of an ecosystem to the lands; they are responsible for refining carbon dioxide in the air. Further, scientific research has shown that there are certain species of ferns that are important when it comes to the manufacturing of medicine (Germ 93). Conifers, on the other hand, reproduce from seeds. In...
1 Pages(250 words)Essay

Topic: Plants

...The Circulatory System of Vascular Plants versus that of Human Beings al Affiliation The Circulatory System of Vascular Plants versusthat of Human Beings Plants are indeed extraordinary in that they have systems that can be compared to those in human beings. The circulatory system of the plants has several similarities and differences when compared to the circulatory system present in human beings. The circulatory system is also called the transport system. Similarities The first similarity between the two systems is that they both transport important materials to the cells while taking away waste. In plants, cells require water and minerals for the...
1 Pages(250 words)Coursework

Functional Relationships

...Production Function Independent variable x. dependent variable y The curve shows the quantity of goods y produced as input x .represented by equation y=f(x). However, there are variable inputs that are used in the production such as labor and fuel. This curve shows the relationship between input and output. Production of goods y is possible with two inputs, this result in partial production function. The function has one variable input and the rest are assumed to be fixed at a certain amount. The output x is attached is attached to every value of y outputs amounts produced by these input. Points below the curve are also part of the quantity produced, this points represent inefficient...
2 Pages(500 words)Assignment
sponsored ads
We use cookies to create the best experience for you. Keep on browsing if you are OK with that, or find out how to manage cookies.

Let us find you another Coursework on topic Functional Biology of Plants for FREE!

Contact Us