Why do cells need ATP?

One of the ways in which ATP is used in the cell is to transport vesicles from the Golgi apparatus to different parts of the cells.

Vesicles act like postmen, carrying tagged proteins and lipids from the sorting office (Golgi) to the delivery address (around the cell).

The postvan is a tiny motor protein called kinesin carries the vesicle along pathways called microtubules.

Look at the video below to see how kinesin ‘walks’ along this pathway – doesn’t it resemble a human walking with a load on their head?

This walking movement is what uses ATP – every time the kinesin lifts a ‘foot’and places it forward, it hydrolyses a molecule of ATP, releasing energy which is used to place the ‘foot’ forward and down.

The vesicle that the kinesin carries can be much larger than its own size – much like how ants manage to carry cargo many times their size from one place to another.

Advertisements

Any questions? Place your questions in the comments box below, and I will get back to you as soon as possible

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s