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AP Biology, Chapter 10

The Process That Feeds the Biosphere
10.1 Photosynthesis converts light energy to the chemical energy of food
1. Distinguish autotrophic and heterotrophic nutrition.
Autotrophs do not derive energy from other organisms
Energy from the Sun or inorganic chemicals
Gather matter in the form of simple organic molecules
Includes plants, protists, and bacteria
Heterotrophs derive energy from other organisms
May be carnivores, herbivores, parasites, commensals, etc.
Gather matter as a by-product of energy
Includes members of all major taxa
Chloroplasts: The Sites of Photosynthesis in Plants
2. Describe the structure of chloroplasts and indicate their locations within
plant cells.
Double membrane encloses dense fluid stroma
In the stroma are interconnected stacks of flattened
Flattened membranes = thylakoids; stacks = grana
Chlorophyll is bound to the thylakoid membranes
Location: around the periphery of the cell
3. Explain how chloroplast structure relates to its function.
Dense stacks of thylakoids efficiently absorb light
Light energy is converted into chemical energy at the thylakoid
Chemical energy used to build carbohydrate in the stroma
4. Write a summary equation for photosynthesis.
6CO2 + 12H2O + energy C6H12O6 + 6O2 + 6H2O
Tracking Atoms Through Photosynthesis: Scientific Inquiry
The Splitting of Water
5. Explain van Niel's hypothesis and describe how it contributed to our
understanding of photosynthesis.
van Niel's hypothesis
Prevailing (wrong) idea: O2 released is from CO2
van Niel's observation
Green sulfur bacteria perform photosynthesis
using H2S
6CO2 + 6H2S + energy C6H12O6 + 12S
iii. Hypothesis: O2 from water, not from CO2
6CO2 + 12H218O + energy C6H12O6 + 6H2O + 618O2
6C18O2 + 12H2O + energy C6H1218O6 + 6H218O + 6O2
In one phase of photosynthesis water is split and O2 is liberated
Glucose is built up from reduced CO2
Photosynthesis as a Redox Process
6. Explain the role of redox reactions in photosynthesis.
High-energy electrons are removed from sugar

Oxygen is added = oxidation

Light boosts the energy of electrons in water
Those high-energy electrons are added to CO2 =

The Two Stages of Photosynthesis: A Preview
7. Describe, in general, the two main stages of photosynthesis.
Light reactions take place on the thylakoids
Splitting of water
Chlorophyll absorbs light
Electrons removed from water absorb the energy
High-energy electrons and H stored on NADP+
(+ 2H NADPH + H+)
Electron transport
High-energy electrons lose energy as they pass
Energy used to pump H+ into the thylakoid
H+ allowed to diffuse; energy used to make ATP
Calvin cycle takes place in the stroma
ATP and NADPH from the light reactions are used
CO2 from the atmosphere is fixed
Glucose is built by reduction
10.2 The light reacytions convert solar energy to the chemical energy of ATP and
The Nature of Sunlight
8. Describe the wavelike and particle-like behaviors of light.
Wavelike: diffraction, wavelength, frequency, interference
Particle-like: discrete units of specific energy
Photosynthetic Pigments: The Light Receptors
9. Describe the relationship between an action spectrum and an absorption
Absorbed wavelengths add energy to electrons in pigments
Plot of absorption vs. wavelength = absorption spectrum
Plot of function vs. wavelength = action spectrum
10. Explain why the absorption spectrum for chlorophyll differs from the action
for photosynthesis.
Action spectrum peaks are broader
Resembles totaled absorption for chlorophylls a and b and carotenoids
Other pigments transfer energy to chlorophyll a
11. How did Engelmann demonstrate the action spectrum of photosynthesis?
Algae filaments laid across the spectrum
Added aerobic bacteria
Aerobic bacteria were attracted to where the most O2 was produced
Counted the bacteria
12. List the wavelengths of light that are most effective for photosynthesis.
Action spectrum has peaks at 420 and 680 nm
Chlorophyll a in photosystem I has peak absorbance at 700 nm
Chlorophyll a in photosystem II has peak absorbance at 680 nm
Excitation of Chlorophyll by Sunlight
13. Explain what happens when chlorophyll or accessory pigments absorbs
Absorbed photon energy is transferred to electrons
In photosystem II the electrons in chlorophyll a
In photosystem I the electrons from the end of electron transport

A Photosystem: A Reaction-Center Complex Associated with LightHarvesting

14. List the components of a photosystem and explain their functions.
Light-harvesting complex: various pigments funnel absorbed light
Reaction-center complex: specific chlorophyll a molecule at the center
Primary electron receptor: immediately captures excited electrons from
Linear Electron Flow
15. Trace electron flow through photosystems I and II.
Photosystem II first absorbs energy, transfers excited electron to
electron acceptor; replaced by electron from water
cytochrome complex
Photosystem I
Absorbs more light energy Primary electron acceptor
NADP reductase
Cyclic Electron Flow
16. Compare cyclic and linear electron flow and explain the relationship
these components of the light reactions.
As electrons flow H+ is transported into the thylakoid
As it flows back out through a channel linked to ATP synthase
Flow of protons is used to make ATP
Eventually excited electrons are captured by NADP
Photosystem I feeds electrons back into the cytochrome
Makes more ATP but no NADP
Linear doesn't make the right ratio of ATP/NADP for use in Calvin
Cyclic makes up the needed ATP
A Comparison of Chemiosmosis in Chloroplasts and Mitochondria
17. Describe important differences in chemiosmosis between oxidative
phosphorylation in
mitochondria and photophosphorylation in chloroplasts.
Protons pumped during electron transport
Electron carriers are similar
Proton gradient is called proton motive force
ATP synthase allows protons to flow and uses the energy to
Mitochondria get electrons from food; chloroplasts by absorbing
Mitochondria pump H+ into innermembrane space
Chloroplasts pump H+ into thylakoids

10.3 The Calvin cycle uses the chemical energy of ATP and NADPH to reduce CO 2
to sugar
18. Summarize the carbon-fixing reactions of the Calvin cycle and describe
changes that
occur in the carbon skeletons of intermediates.
Phase 1: Carbon Fixation
3 Ribulose bisphosphate + 3CO2 6 3-Phosphoglycerate
Initial fixation catalyzed by ribulose bisphosphate
Abbreviated as rubisco
Phase 2: Reduction
6 3-Phosphoglycerate + 6ATP 6 Bisphosphoglycerate +
6 Bisphosphoglycerate + 6NADPH 6 Glyceraldehyde 3phosphate + 6NADP + 6Pi
One molecule of glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate is removed
glucose synthesis
Phase 3: Regeneration of Ribulose bisphosphate
5 Glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate + 3ATP 3 ribulose
Carbon skeletons
Phase 1: 3 5-carbon + 3 1-carbon 6 3-carbon
Phase 2: 6 3-carbon 5 3-carbon + 1 3-carbon for glucose
Phase 3: 5 3-carbon 3 5-carbon
19. Describe the role of ATP and NADPH in the Calvin cycle.
ATP adds energy to the carbon skeletons for use in rearrangement
NADPH adds high-energy electrons
10.4 Alternative mechanisms of carbon fixation have evolved in hot, arid climates
Photorespiration: An Evolutionary Relic?
20. What happens to rubisco when, the O2 concentration is much higher than
Adds O2 to the Calvin cycle instead of CO2
21. Describe the major consequences of photorespiration.
Carbon skeleton breaks apart, CO2 released = photorespiration
No glucose, ATP, or NADPH are made
Worse in hot, arid conditions
C4 Plants
22. Describe two important photosynthetic adaptations that minimize
Above description is of C3 plants
Carbon fixation yields a 3-carbon compound, 3Phosphoglycerate
Rice, wheat, and soybeans
b. Adaptations for hot, arid climates
C4 plants including sugarcane and corn
Carbon fixation yields a 4-carbon compound in mesphyll
CO2 + phosphoenolpyruvate oxaloacetate
Oxaloacetate pumped into bundle sheath cells
Gives off CO2, keeps CO2 high
CAM Plants

CAM plants including succulents, cactus, pineapple

Close stomata during daytime; limiting CO2
Fix CO2 during the night and store it in organic acids
Release CO2 during the day for making glucose
Called crassulacean acid metabolism
The Importance of Photosynthesis: A Review
23. Describe the fate of photosynthetic products.
Broken down in mitochondria for energy
Supplies carbon for anabolism
Exported to the rest of the plant as sucrose
Used to make cellulose
Feeds heterotrophs
Released into the atmosphere
Used in the plant's mitochondria