CIE A Level Biology (9700) 2019-2021

Revision Notes

12.2.8 Energy Yield: Aerobic & Anaerobic Respiration

Aerobic & Anaerobic Respiration

  • In cells there is a much greater energy yield from respiration in aerobic conditions than in anaerobic conditions
  • In anaerobic respiration glucose is only partially oxidised meaning only some of its chemical potential energy is released and transferred to ATP
    • The only ATP producing reaction that continues is glycolysis (~2 ATP)
  • As there is no oxygen to act as the final electron acceptor none of the reactions within the mitochondria can take place
    • The stages that take place inside the mitochondria produce much more ATP than glycolysis alone (~36 ATP)

Comparing aerobic & anaerobic respiration table

Comparing Aerobic and Anaerobic respiration table, downloadable AS & A Level Biology revision notes

Exam Tip

You won’t be expected to know the total yield of ATP from each stage of respiration in detail but be prepared to explain why aerobic respiration produces substantially more ATP than anaerobic respiration.

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Lára graduated from Oxford University in Biological Sciences and has now been a science tutor working in the UK for several years. Lára has a particular interest in the area of infectious disease and epidemiology, and enjoys creating original educational materials that develop confidence and facilitate learning.
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