Difference between aerobic and anaerobic respiration

Difference between aerobic and anaerobic respiration

Respiration, to a layman, can be described as breathing. Breathing is an inevitable life exercise for all living creatures. It is through this process that living creatures produce ultimate energy from food. The breathing process generally needs the help of oxygen. Here, the organism plays a give and take policy between their body cells and the natural surroundings. Initially, respiration refers to an external breathing-in and breathing-out process.

Secondly, it’s an internal process that involves the diffusion of gases with the body and tissues. Finally, it refers to the metabolic process. This is the conversion of stored energy into usable energy.

There are basically two types of respiration – Aerobic respiration and anaerobic respiration. Let’s take a look at the differences between them.


1. Aerobic respiration involves oxygen production

Aerobic respiration is one that produces energy within cells and involves oxygen dissipation. During anaerobic respiration process, the glucose breaks down without oxygen.

2. In Aerobic respiration, oxygen exists as stored energy

Here the oxygen which we inhale becomes fuel, such as sugar, glucose, etc. and exist as stored energies. In anaerobic respiration, the chemical reaction transfers the energy from the glucose to the cell.

3. Aerobic respiration produces ATP while Anaerobic produces lactic acid

When aerobic respiration occurs, a molecule called ATP is produced, which uses the stored energies to power the chemical reactions, in which the cells need to survive.

During anaerobic respiration, lactic acid is produced rather than carbon dioxide and water.

4. In Aerobic respiration, oxygen acts as a reactant, but it acts as an oxidizing agent in anaerobic respiration

5. Anaerobic respiration involves electron transfer

Anaerobic respiration is a respiration process with electron acceptors. These electron acceptors play a vital role in electron transfer reaction.

6. Aerobic respiration takes place in the presence of oxygen

Aerobic respiration harnesses the availability of oxygen, whereas anaerobic respiration occurs without oxygen. Oxygen is the main reactant in aerobic respiration, and in anaerobic respiration, electron acceptors transfer the energy.

7. Aerobic respiration involves Oxidation

In aerobic respiration, there is complete oxidization of glucose, whereas in anaerobic, the glucose molecule is incomplete in oxidizing. Oxygen is the oxidizing agent in aerobic and electron acceptors as the oxidizing agent in anaerobic.

8. The product of Aerobic respiration is Carbon dioxide and water

When the chemical reaction happens in aerobic, it results in creating carbon dioxide and water, whereas in anaerobic respiration the chemical reaction results in creating ethyl alcohol or lactic acid.

9. More energy is released in Aerobic respiration

Aerobic respiration has high energy release as it occurs with a complete oxidizing of glucose. When compared to aerobic, anaerobic respiration has relatively less energy release. The ATP count in aerobic is 38, and in anaerobic, it is just two.

10. Aerobic respiration occurs in macro-organisms

Plants & animals are the primary base for Aerobic respiration, while microorganisms like Bacteria are anaerobic in terms of respiration.

11. The Aerobic respiration occurs on more than one cellular organelles

Two cellular organelles – mitochondria and cytoplasm are the action points of Aerobic respiration, while the cytoplasm is the only site of anaerobic respiration. More so, Aerobic respiration occurs through glycolysis, pyruvate cycle, etc. whereas anaerobic occurs through glycolysis and incomplete breakdown of pyruvate.

Aerobic respiration and anaerobic, both natural energy creation processes, have differences in their cell formation, chemical reaction, output results, and occurrence.

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