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Fermentation in Plants?

  1. Oct 6, 2009 #1
    I was reading my lab manual, and it says "All living organisms, including protists, bacteria, and plants, create ATP in fermentation or cellular respiration and then use ATP in metabolism."
    It doesn't go into any more detail than that, it just states it like it's a known fact and then moves on. But I was like... I had no idea that plants used fermentation or cellular resp., I thought they just got all their energy from photosynthesis. :/
    So, since I'm pretty sure they don't use cellular resp., does anyone know what kind of fermentation they use? Do they use it all the time, or just when they don't have access to light?


    PS. Now that I think about it, there are some plants like the Venus Flytrap that seem to ingest organic material. So do they use cellular respiration?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 6, 2009 #2


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    Energy from photosynthesis is stored in sugars, which can be respired to release their energy again.
  4. Oct 6, 2009 #3
    okay, so do plants use cellular respiration and fermentation as well as photosynthesis?
  5. Oct 6, 2009 #4


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    Think of the bonds in ATP as a transport mechanism, not a storage medium. No matter how an organism accumulates energy, it needs a way to power processes in its cells, and ATP is the molecular "rechargeable battery" that makes this happen.

    The ubiquity of this molecule in living creatures is used by creationists as an argument that God must have done this purposefully. The rational argument that evolution from single-celled organisms to more complex organisms resulted in the ubiquity of ATP gets shoved under the rug.
  6. Oct 6, 2009 #5


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    Most definitely yes. Photosynthesis requires energy and respiration releases the energy, they are opposite pathways and a plant needs them both. What good would it do if you could only capture energy and never release it again?
  7. Oct 6, 2009 #6

    God, I've been taking bio forever and I never realized that. I thought:
    Animals = cell resp
    Plants = photosynthesis
    and that was it.

    :biggrin: I love the word ubiquity.
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