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the totality of an organism's chemical reactions

Metabolic Pathway

begins with a specific molecule, which is then altered in a series of defined steps, resulting in a certain product

Catabolic Pathway

a metabolic pathway that results in the release of energy by breaking down complex molecules to simpler compounds

Cellular Respiration

a catabolic pathway in which the sugar glucose and other organic fuels are broken down in the presence of oxygen to carbon dioxide and water

Anabolic Pathway

a metabolic pathway that consumes energy to build complicated molecules from simpler ones (are sometimes called biosynthetic pathways)


the study of how energy flows through living organisms


the capacity to cause change

Kinetic Energy

the energy associated with the relative motion of objects

Heat/Thermal Energy

kinetic energy associated with the random movement of atoms or molecules

Potential Energy

energy that matter possesses because of its location or structure

Chemical Energy

a term used by biologists to refer to the potential energy available for release in a chemical reaction


the study of the energy transformations that occur in a collection of matter

First Law of Thermodynamics

states that "energy can be transferred and transformed, but it cannot be created or destroyed"

Second Law of Thermodynamics

states that "every energy transfer or transformation increases the disorder (entropy) of the universe"


measure of disorder, randomness

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