Biology » Cellular Respiration » Connections of Carbohydrate, Protein, and Lipid Metabolic Pathways

Connections of Different Metabolic Pathways

You have learned about the catabolism of glucose, which provides energy to living cells. But living things consume more than glucose for food. How does a turkey sandwich end up as ATP in your cells?

This happens because all of the catabolic pathways for carbohydrates, proteins, and lipids eventually connect into glycolysis and the citric acid cycle pathways (see the figure below).

Metabolic pathways should be thought of as porous—that is, substances enter from other pathways, and intermediates leave for other pathways. These pathways are not closed systems. Many of the substrates, intermediates, and products in a particular pathway are reactants in other pathways.

Glycogen from the liver and muscles, hydrolyzed into glucose-1-phosphate, together with fats and proteins, can feed into the catabolic pathways for carbohydrates.

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