Pharmaceutical and healthcare companies are interested in developing substances that affect the mitochondria and related energy-releasing metabolic pathways. Depending on their effect, these substances may be developed into drugs that promote weight loss or weight gain. A substance that decreases the efficiency of the metabolic pathways that convert the organic molecules of food into ATP could help patients lose weight. Individuals taking the drug while eating the same amount of calories as before would convert more of the food to ATP, leaving less to store in the bodyand potentially burning fuel that was previously stored, both resulting in weight loss. Alternatively, substances that increase the efficiency of the pathways that convert food into ATP may be useful for promoting weight gain. Patients eating the same number of calories as before would need to burn less of the food consumed to get needed ATP levels, allowing more to be stored in the body. This may cause weight gain, since more energy would be available for the bodys use in fueling activity.
Unit 3 DQ Question: Consider the impact of Substance One on cellular respiration. Assume it has an influence at the cellular level, no effect on hunger and no other effects than the one described. Would this substance likely cause weight gain or weight loss? Explain why you believe it would have this effect using your knowledge of cell respiration and ATP.
Substance Ones Effect: Impedes the binding of NAD+ to electrons.
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