The phosphorylated sugars and the specific phosphorylating enzymes. Formation, and role in carbohydrate metabolism

  • H. G. Albaum
Part of the Handbuch der Pflanzenphysiologie / Encyclopedia of Plant Physiology book series (532, volume 6)


In recent years there has accumulated a large body of data showing that the initial breakdown of starch and of sugar involves the formation of phosphorylated intermediates. It appears that in higher plants, just as in animals and bacteria, one of the chief functions of the step-wise degradation of these carbohydrates through phosphorylated intermediates is to convert the energy available in their carbon to carbon linkages into the high energy bonds of compounds like adenosinetriphosphate (ATP). Phosphorylated hexoses are also intermediates in the synthesis of fatty acids and glycerol, as well as in the formation of pentoses. The latter are integral parts of many of the prosthetic groups of certain enzyme systems and of nucleic acids. In the tissues of green plants phosphorylated compounds are formed during photosynthesis, and it is probable that CO2 fixation during this process depends at least in part on the operation of a system in the plant which generates phosphorylated 5-carbon fragments. The evidence for the presence of these reactions in plants comes from two mains sources:
  1. 1.

    The demonstration of enzymes in different plants and plant parts which can affect transformations of phosphorylated sugars.

  2. 2.

    The identification of the sugars themselves, either by direct isolation, or by Chromatographic and chemical techniques where these substances are present in small quantity.



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© Springer-Verlag oHG. Berlin · Göttingen · Heidelberg 1958

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  • H. G. Albaum

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