Aerobic Respiration

Aerobic Respiration

Aerobic respiration is the process by which organisms use oxygen to turn fuel, such as fats and sugars, into chemical energy like ATP. In this webinar, we will discuss the key reactions, substrates, intermediates, and enzymes involved in the two major pathways of aerobic respiration in mammals: the citric acid cycle and oxidative phosphorylation.

At a glance


Essential skills

  • Predict disturbances or changes to aerobic respiration cycles given passage information

  • Understand key mechanisms in the citric acid cycle

  • Relate ETC to gen chem concepts like chemical reduction


Knowledge Fundamentals

  • Aerobic vs anaerobic respiration

  • The citric acid cycle

  • Chemical structures of common citric acid

  • Structures of electron carriers NADH and FADH2

  • The ETC and chemiosmosis


On the MCAT

  • Aerobic respiration is a high yield topic, but memorizing ALL the intermediates of the citric acid cycle is not as worthwhile. While we present the entire cycle here, knowing the intermediates is only recommended for high level scorers.

  • The sequence of ETC should be memorized.


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