Principles of Bioenergetics and Fuel Molecule Metabolism

Principles of Bioenergetics and Fuel Molecule Metabolism

by Kevin Ahern, PhD, Georgina Cornwall, PhD

This course covers the material of content category 1D of the official MCAT exam content outline.

Bioenergetics refers to the study of energy transformation within living systems. Required for the most basic of cellular functions, biological systems have the ability to store and utilize energy in the form of nucleoside triphosphate compounds (e.g., ATP and GTP). Energy can be extracted from the intake of energy-rich foods and/or via cellular respiration, as in the case of anaerobic organisms.

In this course, the student will be introduced to the types of biological fuel molecules and other principles of bioenergetics. For optimal comprehension, the student should be familiar with the basic concepts of college-grade biology, chemistry, and physics.

Course Details

  • Videos 78
  • Duration 5:21 h
  • Quiz questions 170
  • Concept Pages 18


Your Educators of course Principles of Bioenergetics and Fuel Molecule Metabolism

 Kevin Ahern, PhD

Kevin Ahern, PhD

Dr. Kevin Ahern is a Professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics at Oregon State University (OSU), USA.
He obtained his PhD in Biochemistry from Oregon State University. Currently, he teaches courses for health sciences students at OSU.
He is co-author of three Open Educational electronic textbooks on Biochemistry and a Guide to Getting Into Medical School.
Due to his achievements, he earned OSU’s highest teaching recognition, the Elizabeth P. Ritchie Distinguished Professor Award in 2017.
Within Lecturio, Dr. Ahern teaches courses on Biochemistry and on "How to Get into Medical School”.

 Georgina Cornwall, PhD

Georgina Cornwall, PhD

Dr. Georgina Cornwall is a Biology Instructor and currently works as an Instructional Designer in the private sector, developing interactive online training materials.
She obtained her PhD in Environmental, Population, and Organismic Biology at the University of Colorado, USA, in 2000, and has since taught a broad array of biology courses at various US universities.
She is an active promoter of hybrid/online teaching formats and interactive courses, and has received several awards for her engaging and innovative course design; e.g., she was named Adjunct Faculty of the Year at Colorado Mountain College in Aspen twice.
Within Lecturio, Dr. Cornwall teaches courses on Biology & Genetics.

User reviews

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Good course!
By Nicolas W. on 17. January 2024 for Carbohydrate Metabolism

To the point. Good organized pathway explanations. Pedagogical presentation skills.

Dr. Ahern
By Fadi J. on 22. November 2023 for Electron Carriers – Oxidation and Reduction in Metabolism

Dr. Ahern is amazing at linking what he's about to teach to previous videos.

Amazing lecture
By Peddi A. on 25. October 2023 for ATP Synthase

The video by Lecturio provides an excellent overview of the electron transport chain and chemiosmosis, two of the most important metabolic processes in the cell. These processes work together to produce ATP, the cell's energy currency. One of the most interesting things about the electron transport chain is that it is a highly efficient way to convert energy from food into ATP. The chain uses the energy from NADH and FADH2, two electron carriers that are produced during glycolysis and the Krebs cycle, to pump protons across the inner mitochondrial membrane. This creates a proton gradient, which is like a dam holding back a reservoir of energy. The ATP synthase enzyme then uses the energy of the proton gradient to drive the synthesis of ATP from ADP and inorganic phosphate. This process is called chemiosmosis. The video does a great job of explaining the complex steps of the electron transport chain and chemiosmosis in a clear and concise way. It also provides helpful animations and diagrams that illustrate the process.

Errors in the Video
By Peddi A. on 16. October 2023 for Fatty Acid Synthesis

I've reviewed the Video, and while it provides a comprehensive overview, there are a few points that need clarification. "Fatty acid synthesis doesn't occur in the mitochondrion; it occurs in the cytoplasm, sequestered from fatty acid oxidation, simplifying the regulation of the two pathways." Clarification: Fatty acid synthesis indeed occurs in the cytoplasm, separate from fatty acid oxidation that takes place in mitochondria. This separation allows for streamlined regulation, ensuring the balance between synthesis and breakdown. "Fatty acid synthesis is chemically similar to the reverse of oxidation, involving joining, reduction, loss of water, and a final reduction, making it essentially the reverse of oxidation." Clarification: Fatty acid synthesis does indeed involve joining of acetyl and malonyl units, reduction steps, and removal of water, making it similar but not exactly the reverse of oxidation. The subtle differences in the chemical steps are crucial for the controlled synthesis of fatty acids. "The enzyme acetyl-CoA carboxylase is regulated through phosphorylation by AMP-activated protein kinase and allosteric binding of citrate, ensuring the balance between synthesis and cellular energy levels." Clarification: Acetyl-CoA carboxylase, a key enzyme in fatty acid synthesis, is indeed regulated through phosphorylation and allosteric binding of citrate. This regulation allows cells to respond to energy demands, modulating fatty acid production accordingly. "Fatty acid synthesis involves a series of steps catalyzed by the multifunctional enzyme fatty acid synthase, where individual activities within the enzyme complex work together, ensuring efficient fatty acid production." Clarification: Fatty acid synthase, a multi functional enzyme complex, plays a central role in fatty acid synthesis. Its individual activities work in harmony within the complex, allowing for the sequential addition of carbon units and the creation of fatty acids up to 16 carbons in length.