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Daniel Zhu

1. When we eat a potato, we eat starch. In our mouth, mechanical digestion occurs. Our teeth grind up the food and we separate the molecules. Our salivary glands produce an Enzyme called salivary amylase which speeds up the hydrolysis of the starch. It breaks the starch into smaller polysaccharides. Then, the starch goes down the esophagus to the stomach. In the stomach, more mechanical digestion occurs as the stomach churns the starch. This breaks down the starch into even smaller polymers. The hydrochloric acid in the stomach breaks down proteins. A most of the hydrolysis and digestion take place in the small intestine, in the form of chemical and mechanical digestion. The pancreatic amylase and other Enzymes from the lining of the intestine hydrolyze the polymers in monomers or monosaccharides. The monomers are absorbed by the lining of the small intestine during the process of absorption. The epithelial tissue in the small intestine does the absorbing. There, they go into capillaries and the bloodstream sends the monosaccharides to cells of the body. These monosaccharides are eventually used as a reactant in C/R to produce ATP to do cell work. Monomers are readily available for C/R like change in your pocket. You can use it right away. Not all monomers are used this way though. Some of it is used to build molecules like DNA, RNA, amino acids, and vitamins with the help of enzymes. Also, the monomers can be used to synthesize glycogen, a polysaccharide. We need enzymes to help speed the dehydration synthesis in the process that glycogen is produced. Glycogen is a short term storage molecule, found in muscle cells and the liver. Glycogen is readily available but you have to hydrolyze it into glucose. Its like money in your checking account. You have to go get the money but you can use it right away. The monomers can also be converted to fats by an enzyme. The fat is a long term energy storage form and requires a long time to hydrolyze it to glucose. The fat is found in fat cells. The fat is like a bond, it takes a long time to hydrolyze it to glucose, just like you cant just spend a bond. You have to wait years. Lets say you went on a run. First, you would use up all the glucose in your cells to produce the extra ATP needed when you run. Then, you would start to hydrolyze glycogen and fats because you need glucose to live and you almost ran out. Thats why when you run or exercise, you burn fats by converting them to glucose and use it for C/R to produce ATP. When you go on a diet, you would use up all the glucose in your cells, glycogen and fats. Since you wouldnt be eating anything else, you would have to hydrolyze amino acids into monomers of glucose because you require glucose for C/R to produce ATP to do cell work.

Daniel Zhu


Oranges, oats, onions, beans, barley, buckwheat, bran.

3. a) Starches and glucose are found in plants. Glycogen is only found in humans. Only starches and glycogen can be hydrolyzed in humans. They have different structures and different functions. b) They all contain glucose, all are polysaccharides and all play a role in humans. They are all polar molecules and all can be synthesized and hydrolyzed. They also all contain carbon, hydrogen and oxygen.