By Richard B. Buxton
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Extra resources for Introduction to Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging: Principles and Techniques,Second Edition
In the mitochondria, the conversion of ADP and Pi back to ATP is coupled to transport of H+ across the mitochondrial membrane, an example of an ionic gradient recharging a chemical reaction ratio. The idea of a system far from equilibrium is important for another reason in addition to ΔG and energy metabolism: for a chemical messenger to convey a “signal,” it must be part of a system that is far from equilibrium. For example, Ca2+ is maintained at a much higher concentration outside the cell, and entry of Ca2+ is a common chemical signal that triggers a chain of events within the cell, such as neurotransmitter release.
However, these are ratios of CBF changes to CMRO2 changes, and not CMRGlc changes. Nevertheless, it is often assumed that CBF and CMRGlc changes are similar, based on numerous PET studies. In short, with activation the OGI decreases. The ﬁnding that glucose metabolism increases much more than O2 metabolism has important implications for the magnitude of the energy metabolism changes during activation. Most of the increase in the metabolic rate of glucose is glycolysis alone, rather than full oxidative metabolism.
Essentially, two electrons are transferred to each NAD+ molecule, and the NAD+ also picks up an H+ to make the neutral form NADH. At equilibrium, NAD+ is present in higher concentration than NADH, so the thermodynamically downhill process of glucose conversion to two pyruvate molecules is coupled to the uphill process of NAD+ → NADH. The NADH serves as an intermediate mechanism to carry electrons to other processes, donating the electrons and reverting to the NAD+ form. The NADH/NAD+ system thus contains stored free energy that can be tapped by other processes.
Introduction to Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging: Principles and Techniques,Second Edition by Richard B. Buxton