- During bursts of heavy activity, demand for ATP increases dramatically.
- However, oxidation of FAs can not provide enough ATP for muscle tissue.
- Blood glucose and glycogen stored in muscle cells must be used to provide ATP molecules.
- Glycolysis occurs and results in the production of pyruvate.
- Lactate travels through the bloodstream to the liver.
- Lactate is converted back to pyruvate in the liver (via lactate dehydrogenase).
- The pyruvate that is formed undergoes gluconeogenesis to produce glucose.
- Glucose can be transported back into the bloodstream to muscle cells to generate more ATP via anaerobic respiration.
- Some muscle protein can also be utilized for energy (via anaerobic respiration).
- Protein is broken down into amino acids (monomers).
- The carbon skeletons of the amino acids can provide energy when oxidized.
- The amino groups (NH4+) are collected in the muscle tissue as glutamate.
- Pyruvate is formed from glycolysis.
- Alanine aminotransferase is used to dispose of the nitrogenous waste that is produced
- Alanine is transported in the bloodstream and arrives at the liver.
- Alanine aminotransferase is used (once again) but operates in the reverse direction
- Glutamate can undergo oxidative deamination and dispose of the nitrogenous waste via the urea cycle.
- The pyruvate (α-keto acid of alanine) formed can be used to produce glucose via gluconeogenesis.
- The glucose can then be transported into the bloodstream to supply the skeletal muscles with more glucose to produce more ATP.
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