The Process of Cell Metabolism

 

The Cell is the smallest unit of life, both structurally and the functionally. It, therefore, is capable of performing life activities, the way living creatures carry on their life process. Among the activities meant above is the process of metabolism.

Metabolism is a chemical process which includes the enzymatic reactions that ensue in the body of a living creature or in the body of a Cell. This is so, because the metabolism process always occurs with the use of catalytic enzymes. In every occurrence of the Cell metabolism, never has it been seen that other factors, apart from those present in nature, have anything to do with it, either naturally or chemically.

The molecules involved in metabolism are enzymes, and the highly energized ATP (Adenosine Tri Phosphate) which represents the bond between three phosphate molecules and the Adenosine compound. The bond is so labile that the ATP can easily release its clusters of phosphates, despite the fact that it belongs to the group of highly energized molecules.

 

Based on the process, metabolism comes under two categories:

 

ANABOLISM or Assimilation or Synthesis or the Process of Formation, i.e. the formation of complex molecules from simple molecules by means of high energy such as light energy for the process of photosynthesis and chemical energy for the process of chemosynthesis.

Photosynthesis is the process of compilation or formation using light energy or photon. This process leads to the formation of carbohydrate and oxygen.

 

Example:

 

Photosynthesis (C assimilation)

 

                                 Light Energy

6 CO2    +  6  H2O                                  C6H12O6      +      6 O2

                                   Chlorophyll                Glucose (chemical energy)

 

 

In the chloroplast there occurs a transformation of energy, i.e. the light energy as the kinetic energy is then turned into chemical energy as the potential energy, which takes the form of bonded organic compounds in the glucose. With the aid of enzymes, the process is not only accelerated but also efficient.

 

Chemosynthesis: As many of us may know, not all types of plants are able to perform C assimilation using light as the source of energy. Some types of bacteria that have no chlorophyll are able to perform C assimilation using energy derived from chemical reactions such as sulphur bacteria, nitrate bacteria, nitrite bacteria, iron bacteria, etc. These bacteria derive their energy from the results of the oxidation of particular compounds.

The iron bacteria derives their chemical energy from Fe3+ (ferri), a result of oxidizing Fe2+(Ferro). The Nitrosomonas and the Nitrosococcus bacteria derive their energy by oxidizing NH3, or, to be exact, Ammonium Carbonate is turned into nitric acid by the Nitrosomonas reaction.

 

(NH4)2CO3 + 3 O2                                2 HNO2 + CO2 + 3 H20 + Energy

 

It is astonishing though to know that these Nitrosomonas bacteria derive their energy from the chemical processes occurring in nature.

As already mentioned earlier, anabolism is the phase-by-phase process by which complex molecules are synthesized from simple chemical compounds. Such a process requires external energy, e.g. light energy and chemical energy. The energy is further used to bond simple compounds, thereby transforming them into more complex compounds. Thus, in this process the energy needed do not diminish; rather it is stored as chemical bonds of the complex compounds that are formed. Apart from light energy and chemical energy, another form of energy that can be used to trigger anabolic reaction is the ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate) energy, which itself is the product of a catabolic reaction.

 

CATABOLISM, or Dissimilation or the Process of Remodeling, i.e. the process of breaking down organic matter in order to release the chemical energy stored in the organic compounds. At the time the compound/molecule is broken down, thereby turning itself into simpler compounds/molecules, the energy is released and thermal energy is formed.

The main purpose of catabolism is to free the energy that is contained in the source of the compound. If it occurs in an aerobe environment, such a process of disentangling is known as the respiratory process. If, however, it occurs in an anaerobe environment, the process is known as fermentation.

 

Example:

 

a. The Process of Respiration

                                     Enzyme

C6H12O6 +  6 O2                              6 CO2    +   6 H2O   + 686 KCal                               

(Chemical energy)                                      

 

Respiration is a process by which the energy contained in energy-providing substances is freed through chemical processes by means of oxygen, whereby ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate), a form of chemical energy, is produced for use in such life activities as the synthetic process (anabolism), movements, and growth.

 

b. The Process of Fermentation: In principle, the process is similar to that of respiration, both in terms of the purpose and the function. The only thing that differentiates them is that while respiration requires oxygen, fermentation occurs in an oxygen-free environment.

 

C6H12O6                                      2 C2H5OH    +    2 CO2    +   Energy                              

                  (Chemical energy)        (Ethanol)      

 

(Source: Mr.Widi - biologist)

 

The discovery that there are indeed unicellulars that require no oxygen in running their life process (anaerobes) confirms the truth of our assumption that when the cell-to-be first came into being, it required no oxygen at all to start its life.

 

Having  made a quick review of this subject of how metabolism works in the body Cells, one may perhaps by now have the impression that whatever that exists in nature must certainly have existed not only because of the presence of some other natural existence but also because of the effectiveness of the prevailing natural laws. The Cell-to-be is thus no exception: any change that occurs to it right from the time it first emerged, this change must be under the influence of not only some other natural existence but also the natural laws in effect.

Let’s now look back at what happens following the compression of the core of the Carbon. As soon as the core divides, all other compounds follow suit. The once high-energy complex compounds are dismantled and becomes low-energy simple compounds, similar to what happens in Cell catabolism. After a period of separation, certain events occur when the low-energy simple compounds recompile themselves to form complex compounds with the aid of the various facilities available at their vicinity, and these includes external energy such as light energy and chemical energy. These different forms of energy are used to bond the simple compounds so that they turn into more complex compounds. Thus in such a process as this the energy needed never gets diminished, but is kept in store in the form of the chemical bonds of the complex compounds they form. Later the energy can be re-used for further processes that are apt to occur in the cell-to-be.

 

What if the basic compounds of the Cell-to-be happens to be present also in the Cell? What if the process of the dismantling of the compounds—at the time it happened naturally for the first time ever—happened to have a very close resemblance with the catabolism process?

 

If the answers to these questions are the ones that tend to justify this idea of the Cell having emerged through the division of compounds in the Carbon body, we still need to have some other supportive data.

The supportive data do not necessarily be something that have to directly pinpoint to the subject-matter. Preferably, the data emphasis more on the workings of the natural force, or on how the inner part of the Cell-to-be turns into what we have in the Cell today. All these will serve to further encourage us in our effort to support the opinion the Cell emerges by natural force.

 

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