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Flashcards in Photosynthesis Deck (37):

why is photosynthesis important

- plants use the chemical energy they get from photosynthesis to synthesis large organic molecules, they form the building block of living cells from simple inorganic molecules such as water and carbon dioxide this is called autotrophic nutrition


What are organisms that photosynthesise called



Write down the general equation for photosynthesis

6CO2 + 6H20 + energy from photons = C6H12O6 + 6O2
(chlorophyll over the equals sign)


What is a photon

A photon is a particle of light, each photon contains an amount of energy


What is the main product of photosynthesis

the main product is a monosaccharide sugar this can then be converted back to a diasaccharide for transport


what is carbon fixation

this is the process by which carbon dioxide is converted into sugars
- the carbon synthesising all types of organic molecules is provided by carbon fixation


What kind of reaction is carbon fixation

- it is an endothermic reaction so needs energy
- also needs electrons, the addition of electrons is a reduction reaction


What does carbon fixation do

it helps regulate the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and oceans


What do plants do in respiration

- they oxidise the organic molecules that have previously synthesised by photosynthesis and stored releasing chemical energy
-they oxidise glucose and other organic molecules to produce carbon dioxide and water and release chemical energy


what are heterotrophs

These are non-photosynthetic organisms that obtain energy by digesting complex organic molecules of food to smaller molecules that they can use as respiratory substances,


What kind of reaction is respiration

- it is exothermic as it releases chemical energy and drives the organisms metabolism


Write out the equation for respiration

C6H12O6 + 6O2 = 6H20 + 6CO2 + energy


How do photosynthesis and respiration work together

- they are important for maintaining the atmosphere
- photosynthesis removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and releases oxygen whereas aerobic respiration does the opposite


What is the compensation point

- This is when photosynthesis and respiration happens at the same rate therefore there is not net gain or loss of carbohydrate


Whats the compensation period

this is the time taken for the plant to reach its compensation point


What can affect the compensation period

- different for different plant species
- shade plants can utilise light of lower intensity than sun plants can
- when exposed to light after being in darkness shade plants reach their compensation point quicker than sun plants which require a higher light intensity to reach their maximum photosynthesis rate


What is the granum

- this is the inner part of chloroplast made of stacks of thylakoid membranes where the light dependent stage of photosynthesis takes place


What is a stroma

- this is the fluid-filled matrix of chloroplasts where the light dependent stage of photosynthesis takes place


Describe a chloroplast

- disc shaped and around 2-10 micrometres long
- they are surrounded by a double membrane, the envelope with an intermembrane space of width 10-20 nanometres between the inner and outer membrane
- outer membrane is highly permeable


Where does the first stage of photosynthesis take place

- it takes place in the grana


Describe the granum

- chloroplasts have three distinct membranes, these are the outer, inner and thylakoid which means there are three separate internal compartments these are the intermembrane space, stroma and the thylakoid space
- the thylakoids within a granum may be connected to thylakoids within another granum by intergranal lamellae
- thylakoid membrane of each chloroplast is less permeable and folds into flattened disc-like sacs called thylakoids that form sack
- each thylakoids is called a granum and one granum may contain up to 100 thylakoids


what is there a huge surface area for in the chloroplast

- the distribution of photosystems that contain the photosynthetic pigments that trap sunlight energy
- the electron carriers and ATP synthase enzymes that are needed to convert that light energy into ATP


What holds the photosystems in place

proteins that are embedded in the thylakoid membranes


What is the grana surrounded by and why

it is surrounded by the stroma so the products of the light dependent stage can easily pass to the stroma to be used in the light independent stage


Describe what the stroma is used for

- contains the enzymes which are needed to catalyse the reactions of the light-independent stage of photosynthesis
- contains starch, grains, oil droplets, small ribosomes similar to those found in prokaryote cells and DNA
- loop of DNA contains genes that code for some of the proteins needed for photosynthesis these are assembled at the chloroplast ribosomes


What is a photosynthetic pigment

- this is a pigment that absorbs specific wavelengths of light and traps the energy associated with the light, such as pigments include chlorophyll a and b, carotene and xanthophyll


How do photosynthetic pigments work

- energy associated with the wavelengths of light is captured is funneled down to the primary pigment reaction centre consisting of a type of chlorophyll at the base of the photosystem


What are the two types of chlorophyll

- chlorophyll a
- chlorophyll b


Describe chlorophyll a

- there are two types, P680 and P700
- They are both blue-green and are both situated at the centre of photosystems, both absorb red light and have different absorption peaks
- P680 - found in photosystem II and peak 680nm
- P700 - found in photosystem I and peak 700nm
- also absorbs some blue light with wavelength of around 440nm


Describe chlorophyll b

- absorbs blue light of wavelengths 400-500 nm, and around 640 nm
- appears yellow green


describe carotenoids

- absorb blue light of wavelength 400-500 nm
- reflect yellow and orange light


Describe Xanthophylls

- absorb blue and green light of wavelengths 375-550 nm
- they reflect yellow light


What are the factors affecting photosynthesis

- light intensity
- carbon dioxide concentration
- temperature
- water stress


Describe how light intensity affects photosynthesis and what effect does it have on the Calvin cycle

- light provides the energy to power the first stage of photosynthesis and produce ATP and reduced NADP needed for the next stage
- also causes the stomata to open for gaseous exchange, this causes transpiration and the uptake of water
- as light intensity decreases photosynthesis decreases

- GP cannot be reduced to TP
- TP levels fall and GP accumulates
- if TP levels fall RuBP cannot be regenerated


Describe how carbon dioxide affects photosynthesis and how does it affect the Calvin cycle

- if carbon dioxide concentration increases the rate of photosynthesis increases

- RuBP cannot accept it and accumulates
- GP cannot be made
- Therefore TP cannot be made


Describe how temperature affects photosynthesis and the Calvin cycle

- from low temperatures to temperatures of around 25-30 degrees if plants have enough water and carbon dioxide and sufficient light intensity the rate of photosynthesis increases as temperature increases
- at temperatures above 30 degrees for most plants, growth rates may reduce due to photorespiration; oxygen completes with carbon dioxide for the enzyme RuBisCO's active site reducing the amount of carbon dioxide being accepted by RuBP and subsequently reducing the quantity of GP and therefore TP being produced, due to the lack of TP being produced this means that RuBP cannot be regenerated
- at temperatures above 45 degrees enzymes involved are denatured reducing the concentrations of GP and TP therefore eventually RuBP as it cannot be regenerated due to lack of TP


Describe how water stress affects photosynthesis

if not enough water is available to the plant than
- the roots cannot take up enough to replace the water lost in transpiration
- cells loose water and become plamolysed
- plant roots produce abscisic acid that when translocated to leaves it causes stomata to close reducing gaseous exchange
- tissues become flaccid and leaves wilt
- the rate of photosynthesis greatly reduces