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date: 14 July 2024

13. p. 445Photosynthesislocked

13. p. 445Photosynthesislocked

  • Trudy McKee
  •  and James R. McKee

Abstract

This chapter considers oxygenic photosynthesis as the most important biochemical process on earth. With a few minor exceptions, photosynthesis is the only mechanism by which an external abiotic source of energy is harnessed by the living world, and it is the source of O2, which sustains all aerobic organisms. It explains photosynthesis as the light-driven biochemical mechanism whereby CO2 is incorporated into organic molecules, such as glucose. The chapter refers to captured light energy that is used to synthesise adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH), which drive the process. The reducing power of NADPH is necessary as a strong electron donor is required to reduce the fully oxidised, low-energy carbon atoms in CO2 to the carbon units of organic molecules.

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