ATP hydrolysis mechanism | Energy and enzymes | Biology | Khan Academy | Summary and Q&A

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August 14, 2015
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ATP hydrolysis mechanism | Energy and enzymes | Biology | Khan Academy

TL;DR

ATP hydrolysis releases energy for cellular processes through the action of ATPase enzymes.

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Questions & Answers

Q: What is the role of ATP in cellular energy processes?

ATP is the primary energy currency of cells, providing energy for various cellular processes such as muscle contraction, active transport, and synthesis of biomolecules.

Q: Why does ATP hydrolysis release energy?

When ATP is hydrolyzed into ADP and a phosphate group, the chemical bonds are broken, resulting in the release of stored energy. This energy can be used by the cell for various metabolic reactions.

Q: What is the significance of the activation energy barrier during ATP hydrolysis?

The activation energy barrier refers to the energy required to initiate the hydrolysis reaction. Without enzymes like ATPases, ATP hydrolysis would occur very slowly or not at all, preventing the spontaneous release of energy.

Q: How do ATPase enzymes facilitate ATP hydrolysis?

ATPase enzymes surround the ATP molecule and shield its negative charges by interacting with positive ions. This reduces the repulsion between negative charges, lowering the activation energy barrier and allowing the hydrolysis reaction to occur.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • ATP is the energy currency of cells, and hydrolysis of ATP into ADP and a phosphate group releases free energy.

  • The release of free energy during ATP hydrolysis is a spontaneous reaction with a decrease in free energy of approximately 30.5 KJ/mol.

  • Hydrolysis of ATP requires overcoming an activation energy barrier, which can be facilitated by ATPase enzymes.

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