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Topic: A few funny questions about ATP  (Read 10084 times)

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Offline wasia

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A few funny questions about ATP
« on: April 11, 2009, 06:01:55 AM »
Hello.

I have been reading some basic stuff about biochemistry recently and thus have some questions about ATP (Adenosine triphosphate):

1) Could a cell culture live without glucose and oxygen, but having a lot of ATP around?

2) How does ATP smell and taste? Would it be digested (used to get energy) by a human?

Thank you for any answers  ;D

Offline Arkcon

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Re: A few funny questions about ATP
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2009, 11:18:46 AM »
This is in many ways a hard question to answer, ATP is the energy currency of many cells, in that it is the way energy is used by many enzymes.  But it isn't very stable, in bulk, or in solution.  You can buy a vial from chemical supply companies, and keep it on ice, and make a solution of it, to add to a tube of isolated enzymes, and run a reaction.  But it isn't easy, to get enough into solution, for a long enough time, to keep cells alive.  It'd be a pretty expensive experiment, to prove ... not much at all.

As for the taste, many nucleotides are used in trace amounts as flavor enhancers in prepared foods.  Just like free amino acids, like the monosodium salt of glutamic acid (do you know that one?) they add an umani flavor to foods.
Hey, I'm not judging.  I just like to shoot straight.  I'm a man of science.

Offline wasia

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Re: A few funny questions about ATP
« Reply #2 on: April 12, 2009, 05:35:04 AM »
So, Arkcon, in your opinion the answers would be the following (am I right?):

1) Yes.

2) Tastes and smells similar to MSG. Unknown if nutritionally beneficial.

Offline Arkcon

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Re: A few funny questions about ATP
« Reply #3 on: April 12, 2009, 07:29:36 PM »
1).  Unknown.  Unlikely.  You can't have enough in solution to be sure.  I don't know if cells have a transport mechanism to import ATP, they usually make their own intracellular ATP, as needed.

2).  Humans and other primates lack an enzyme needed to break down nucleosides fully, and only beak them down to uric acid.  Uric acid is not very soluble, and is excreted as crystals in urine.  Excessive nucleic acid consumption can lead to kidney damage, and gout.
Hey, I'm not judging.  I just like to shoot straight.  I'm a man of science.

Offline DocSuleman

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Re: A few funny questions about ATP
« Reply #4 on: August 31, 2009, 03:33:31 PM »
1) Could a cell culture live without glucose and oxygen, but having a lot of ATP around?

the answer is NO NO NO NO

because the purpose of glucose and oxygen is not merely to provide ATP to the body but it is also involved in synthesis of many life essential lipids and nonessential amino acids. Without glucose many non essential amino acids will also become essential, as they cant be synthesized by the body. Remember lipid synthesis need NADPH which is formed in Pentosephosphate pathway by glucose 6 phosphate. so deficiency of proteins and lipids in the body gives rise to the instability of cell resulting the death of the cell.



2) How does ATP smell and taste? Would it be digested (used to get energy) by a human?

I dunno about taste and smell but I'm sure about its digestion.

In human digestive system (and other mammals) DNA and RNA are catabolized by Nucleases into oligonucleotides. These oligonucleotides are further hydrolyzed by Pancreatic Phophodiesterases into Mononucleatides (mixture of 5' and 3'). the phosphate group of monocuclotide is removed by Nucleaotidases releasing Nucleoside.. They are converted in to Purines/Pyrimidines and up taken by cells of intestine. most of these purines/pyramidines are converted in to uric acid and secreted but some are used for synthesis of Nucleic acid.


So it is evident that they are not used for getting energy. just the body has mechanism to get ride of them or can synthesized nucleic acid when the body fails or less in energy to synthesized by using its own resources.

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