7.01SC | Fall 2011 | Undergraduate

Fundamentals of Biology


Biochemical Reactions, Enzymes, and ATP

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Session Overview


This session will introduce basic ideas of metabolism, Gibbs free energy, biochemical reactions, enzymes and ATP as the energy currency.

Learning Objectives

  • To understand that organisms, through their biochemistry, transform matter and energy.
  • To apply the general laws of thermodynamics to biological reactions.
  • To define Gibbs free energy, determine the Gibbs free energy change associated with a biochemical reaction, and identify spontaneous and non-spontaneous reactions.
  • To understand the role that enzymes play in biochemical reactions.
  • To understand how ATP provides the energy to power cellular work.

Session Activities

Lecture Video

Watch the lecture video excerpt

Check Yourself

Question 1

If the ΔG of a reaction is negative, which of the following is a true statement?

All of these options. check
Energy is released in this reaction. close
None of these options. close
The reaction is exergonic. close
The reaction is spontaneous. close

Question 2

Choose an ending that makes the following statement true. “In an enzyme catalyzed reaction…”

energy is always released close
the activation energy is decreased. check
the difference in Gibbs free energy between products and reactants is lowered. close
the equilibrium constant is changed. close

Question 3

Which of the following statements is true with respect to ATP? ATP is commonly used in coupled reactions1. The hydrolysis of ATP is an endergonic reaction 2. The hydrolysis of ATP produces inorganic phosphate and ATP. 3. ATP is used as an energy source and a building block in RNA. 4. ATP can donate a phosphate group that becomes covalently linked to a protein.

a, b, c, d close
a, c, d, e check
all of these options close
b, c, d close

Session Activities

Practice Problems

Further Study

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