Bacteria and Energy
How do bacteria cells process energy without a mitochondria?
They are essentially a cell which is the size of a mitochondria.
Ron Baker, Ph.D.
Bacteria have similar metabolic reactions and processes that convert
biochemical energy from nutrients into ATP, or energy. Cellular
respiration, which takes place in the mitochondria, are catabolic
reactions that involve the oxidation of one molecule and the reduction
of another. In the case of animal and plant cells, the nutrients in
cellular respiration include glucose, amino acids and fatty acids, and
the oxidizing agent (electron acceptor) is molecular oxygen (O2).
Bacteria and archae can also be lithotrophs which have the ability to
respire using inorganic molecules. These prokaryotic organisms, or
microbes, use inorganic molecules such as sulfur, metal ions, methane
or hydrogen - as electron donors and acceptors. Organisms that use
oxygen as a final electron acceptor produce ATP by aerobic
respiration, while those that do not are referred to as anaerobic.
Hope that helps.
Click here to return to the Molecular Biology Archives
Update: June 2012