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Table 6.
Summary of the procedure to simulate cellular respiration. Equations for students and specific action instructions are included for all four steps.
Equation for chemical changes in each modeling step (present to students)Specific actions that students complete in each step
Step 1: Cellular respiration: Glucose catabolism — Matter 
C6H12O6 + 6 H2O → 6 CO2 + 12 H (2e each) + 12 H+ Catabolize and oxidize glucose and water to generate 6 CO2 and 12 H and 12 H+ 
Set released CO2 to the side for release from cell 
Set 12 H and 12 H+ released from oxidation to the side 
Release 40 energy stickers from glucose and save for next step 
Note: Instructor should ask students to identify where the hydrogen atoms and their electrons should be transferred. The correct answer is the electron carriers
10 NAD+ + 10 H (2e each) → 10 NADH Reduce NAD+ with 10H released from glucose oxidation 
2 FAD + 2 H (2e each) + 2 H+ → 2 FADH2 Reduce FAD with 2H and 2H+ released from glucose oxidation to generate 2 FADH2 
Step 2: Cellular respiration: Glucose catabolism — Energy 
4 ADP + Pi → 4 ATP Generate 4 ATP and transfer 2 energy stickers from glucose to ATP 
10 NAD+ + 10 H (2e each) → 10 NADH Transfer 20 energy stickers from glucose to NADH 
2 FAD + 2 H (2e each) + 2 H+ → 2 FADH2 Transfer 4 energy stickers from glucose to FADH2 
Move the remaining 14 energy stickers to heat 
Step 3: Cellular respiration: Oxidative phosphorylation — Matter 
10 NADH → 10 NAD+ + 10 H (2e each) Oxidize 10 NADH to release 10 H and set to the side 
2 FADH2 → 2 FAD + 2 H (2e each) + 2 H+ Oxidize 2 FADH2 to release 2 H and 2 H+ and set to side 
Release 24 energy stickers from NADH and FADH2 and save for next step 
Note: Instructor should ask students to identify where the hydrogen atoms and their electrons should be transferred. The correct answer is to oxygen to form water
12 H (2e each) + 12 H+ + 6 O2 → 12 H2Use 12 H released from NADH and FADH2 and saved 12 H+ to reduce 6 O2 and generate 12 H2
Set 12 H2O to the side to be released 
Step 4: Cellular respiration: Oxidative phosphorylation — Energy 
28 ADP + Pi → 28 ATP Generate 28 ATP and transfer 14 energy stickers from NADH and FADH2 to ATP 
Move remaining 10 energy stickers to heat 
Equation for chemical changes in each modeling step (present to students)Specific actions that students complete in each step
Step 1: Cellular respiration: Glucose catabolism — Matter 
C6H12O6 + 6 H2O → 6 CO2 + 12 H (2e each) + 12 H+ Catabolize and oxidize glucose and water to generate 6 CO2 and 12 H and 12 H+ 
Set released CO2 to the side for release from cell 
Set 12 H and 12 H+ released from oxidation to the side 
Release 40 energy stickers from glucose and save for next step 
Note: Instructor should ask students to identify where the hydrogen atoms and their electrons should be transferred. The correct answer is the electron carriers
10 NAD+ + 10 H (2e each) → 10 NADH Reduce NAD+ with 10H released from glucose oxidation 
2 FAD + 2 H (2e each) + 2 H+ → 2 FADH2 Reduce FAD with 2H and 2H+ released from glucose oxidation to generate 2 FADH2 
Step 2: Cellular respiration: Glucose catabolism — Energy 
4 ADP + Pi → 4 ATP Generate 4 ATP and transfer 2 energy stickers from glucose to ATP 
10 NAD+ + 10 H (2e each) → 10 NADH Transfer 20 energy stickers from glucose to NADH 
2 FAD + 2 H (2e each) + 2 H+ → 2 FADH2 Transfer 4 energy stickers from glucose to FADH2 
Move the remaining 14 energy stickers to heat 
Step 3: Cellular respiration: Oxidative phosphorylation — Matter 
10 NADH → 10 NAD+ + 10 H (2e each) Oxidize 10 NADH to release 10 H and set to the side 
2 FADH2 → 2 FAD + 2 H (2e each) + 2 H+ Oxidize 2 FADH2 to release 2 H and 2 H+ and set to side 
Release 24 energy stickers from NADH and FADH2 and save for next step 
Note: Instructor should ask students to identify where the hydrogen atoms and their electrons should be transferred. The correct answer is to oxygen to form water
12 H (2e each) + 12 H+ + 6 O2 → 12 H2Use 12 H released from NADH and FADH2 and saved 12 H+ to reduce 6 O2 and generate 12 H2
Set 12 H2O to the side to be released 
Step 4: Cellular respiration: Oxidative phosphorylation — Energy 
28 ADP + Pi → 28 ATP Generate 28 ATP and transfer 14 energy stickers from NADH and FADH2 to ATP 
Move remaining 10 energy stickers to heat 
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