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What is the by-product when skeletal cells respire anaerobically ?

  1. Feb 4, 2005 #1
    What is the by-product when skeletal cells respire anaerobically ?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 7, 2005 #2

    DocToxyn

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    I think you are asking about skeletal muscle cells and if so the conversion of glycogen to glucose and then glucose to pyruvic acid creates 2 ATP molecules for energy (all under anaerobic conditions). The pyruvate is rapidly converted to lactic acid if no O2 is around for the aerobic side of the equation, thus this lactate could be considered a by-product.
     
  4. Feb 7, 2005 #3
    thx
    Asking this question because i heard my friend saying that skeletal muscle cells give alcohol when respire anaerobically.
     
  5. Feb 7, 2005 #4
    DocToxyn is correct, and the process of anaerobic process is known as glycolysis.
     
  6. Feb 7, 2005 #5

    Moonbear

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    Yes, DocToxyn is correct. However, glycolysis is the first step of cellular respiration, both aerobic and anaerobic (it uses NAD+ instead of oxygen as the electron acceptor, so can be an oxidative reaction even in the absence of oxygen).

    Under anaerobic conditions, the product of glycolysis, pyruvate, is utilized in fermentation. In a muscle cell (as well as fungi and some bacterial cells), this would be lactic acid fermentation, as DocToxyn pointed out. The other possible fermentation reaction is alcohol fermentation, as is carried out by yeast and some other bacterial cells. This may be where the confusion came from because both processes are called fermentation, which refers to anaerobic respiration, but the end product is different in different cell types, so you name the process according to the end product.
     
  7. Feb 8, 2005 #6

    DocToxyn

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    Ahh, if only that were true, "runner's high" would have a whole new meaning. :wink:
     
  8. Feb 8, 2005 #7

    cronxeh

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    well water is alcohol..
     
  9. Feb 8, 2005 #8
    Ah, thanks Moonbear the clarification/extension.. I also noticed a blunder in my original post "process of anaerobic process", which should read "process of anaerobic respiration". So is glycolysis the only anaerobic pathway for respiration in muscle cells? That's more what I was thinking about, lactic acid production due to a lack of oxygen, since the OP mentioned skeletal muscle cells.
     
  10. Feb 8, 2005 #9

    Moonbear

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    In this thread I provided links for sites with animations of the three steps of aerobic respiration. In anaerobic respiration (absence of oxygen), instead of going from glycolysis to the Krebs cycle, you go from glycolysis to fermentation and can get either lactic acid or alcohol as a by-product. In skeletal muscle, it will be lactic acid.
     
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