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Anabolism/Catabolism as Endergonic or Exergonic?

Discussion of all aspects of biological molecules, biochemical processes and laboratory procedures in the field.

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Anabolism/Catabolism as Endergonic or Exergonic?

Postby robd » Mon Jan 12, 2009 2:18 am

My teacher has asked us to label Anabolism and Catabolism as either Endergonic or Exergonic.

I have no idea how to sort this out. It seems very clear cut but I am thinking his definitions of the words have thrown me off and confused me. Any help?

Thanks in advance :D
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Re: Anabolism/Catabolism as Endergonic or Exergonic?

Postby blcr11 » Mon Jan 12, 2009 5:33 pm

It's maybe too simple a dichotomy, but catabolism can be thought of as "falling down" an energy gradient, going from larger compounds with higher potential energy, to smaller compounds of lower potential and giving up energy to the system in the process (you've got to put aside or consider separately the phosphoylated fragments, but that's in part what I mean about "too simple"). Anabolism runs in the opposite direction (usually over distinct pathways) "absorbing" energy from the system to make more complicated compounds out of the simpler starting materials.
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