Cell Respiration and Photosynthesis

By Amy Schultz

What are Cellular Respiration and Photosynthesis?

Photosynthesis is a process that uses light to create energy for plants


Cellular Respiration is a process that takes place within the cell that creates ATP, or energy.

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"CellRespiration" by RegisFrey

What Exactly Happens in Cell Respiration?

The first step of Cellular Respiration in Glycosis. Glycosis is a process that turns glucose into pyruvic acid, which in turn creates NADH. NADH then releases enzymes which go along a series of enzymes. This is called an electron transport chain. The end result is ATP. Cellular Respiration uses the Krebs Cycle.


The equation for Cellular Respiration is C6H12O6 + O2 ---> CO2 + H2O + Energy

(Glucose + Oxygen ---> Carbon Dioxide + Water + Engery

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Well, What Exactly Happens in Photosynthesis?

Light is absorbed into a cell and converted by chloroplasts within the cell, using the Calvin Cycle, to energy currency. This energy currency is known as either Adenosine Triphosphates (ATP) or nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH).


The equation for Photosynthesis is CO2 + H2O + Light ---> O2 + C6H12O2

(Carbon Dioxide + Water +Light ---> Oxygen + Sugar)

How are They the Same?

They both involve the same compounds, just with different scenarios. They both involve redox reactions, also.

How are They Different?

Photosynthesis needs energy to make glucose, while Cellular Respiration uses this glucose to actually create energy.