Adenosine diphosphate

Adenosine diphosphate

Adenosine diphosphate
Skeletal formula of ADP
Ball-and-stick model of ADP (shown here as a 3- ion)
IUPAC name
[(2R,3S,4R,5R)-5-(6-aminopurin-9-yl)-3,4-dihydroxyoxolan-2-yl]methyl phosphono hydrogen phosphate
Other names
adenosine 5′-diphosphate
ChemSpider  Y
DrugBank  N
EC number 218-249-0
Jmol-3D images Image
RTECS number AU7467000
Molar mass 427.201 g/mol
Appearance white powder
Density 2.49 g/mL
Boiling point 877.7 °C (1,611.9 °F; 1,150.9 K)
log P -2.640
Safety data sheet MSDS
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
 N  (: Y/N?)

Adenosine diphosphate (ADP) (Adenosine pyrophosphate (APP)) is an important metabolism and is essential to the flow of energy in living cells. A molecule of ADP consists of three important structural components: a sugar backbone attached to a molecule of adenine and two phosphate groups bonded to the 5 carbon atom of ribose. The carbon molecules that make up the ring structure of a sugar can be named in a way that more specifically designates the location of the phosphate and adenosine attachments: The sugar backbone of ADP is known as a pentose sugar and consists of five carbon molecules. The two phosphate groups of ADP are added in series to the 5’ carbon of the sugar backbone, while the adenosine molecule attaches to the 1’ carbon.[1]

The two phosphates in ADP can be correlated with ATP and AMP. ATP consists of three phosphate groups attached in series to the 5’ carbon location, whereas ADP contains two phosphate groups attached to the 5’ position, and AMP contains only one phosphate group attached at the 5’ position. Energy transfer used by all living things is a result of dephosphorylation of ATP by enzymes known as ATPases. The cleavage of a phosphate group from ATP results in the coupling of energy to metabolic reactions and a by-product, a molecule of ADP.[1] Being the "molecular unit of currency", ATP is continually being formed from lower-energy molecules of ADP and AMP. The biosynthesis of ATP is achieved throughout processes such as substrate-level phosphorylation, oxidative phosphorylation, and photophosphorylation, all of which facilitating the addition of a phosphate group to an ADP molecule.


  • Bioenergetics 1
  • Cellular respiration 2
    • Catabolism 2.1
    • Glycolysis 2.2
    • Citric acid cycle 2.3
    • Oxidative phosphorylation 2.4
      • Mitochondrial ATP synthase complex 2.4.1
  • Blood platelet activation 3
  • See also 4
  • References 5


ADP-ATP cycling supplies the energy needed to do work in a biological system, the thermodynamic process of transferring energy from one source to another. There are two types of energy: potential energy and kinetic energy. Potential energy can be thought of as stored energy, or usable energy that is available to do work. Kinetic energy is the energy of an object as a result of its motion. The significance of ATP is in its ability to store potential energy within the phosphate bonds. The energy stored between these bonds can then be transferred to do work. For example, the transfer of energy from ATP to the protein myosin causes a conformational change when connecting to actin during muscle contraction. It takes multiple reactions between myosin and actin to effectively produce one muscle contraction, and, therefore, the availability of large amounts of ATP is required to produce each muscle contraction. For this reason, biological processes have evolved to produce efficient ways to replenishment the potential energy of ATP from ADP.[2]

Breaking one of ATP’s phosphorus bonds generates approximately 30.5 kilojoules per Mole of ATP (7.3 kcal).[3] ADP can be converted, or powered back to ATP through the process of releasing the chemical energy available in food; in humans, this is constantly performed via aerobic respiration in the mitochondria.[2] Plants use photosynthetic pathways to convert and store energy from sunlight, also conversion of ADP to ATP.[3] Animals use the energy released in the breakdown of glucose and other molecules to convert ADP to ATP, which can then be used to fuel necessary growth and cell maintenance.[2]

Cellular respiration


The ten-step catabolic pathway of glycolysis is the initial phase of free-energy release in the breakdown of glucose and can be split into two phases, the preparatory phase and payoff phase. ADP and phosphate are needed as precursors to synthesize ATP in the payoff reactions of the TCA cycle and oxidative phosphorylation mechanism.[4] During the payoff phase of glycolysis, the enzymes phosphoglycerate kinase and pyruvate kinase facilitate the addition of a phosphate group to ADP by way of substrate-level phosphorylation.[5]

Glycolysis overview


Glycolysis is performed by all living organisms and consists of 10 steps. The net reaction for the overall process of

  1. ^ a b Cox, Michael; Nelson, David R.; Lehninger, Albert L (2008). Lehninger principles of biochemistry. San Francisco: W.H. Freeman.  
  2. ^ a b c Nave, C.R. (2005). "Adenosine Triphosphate". Hyper Physics [serial on the Internet]. Georgia State University. 
  3. ^ a b Farabee, M.J. (2002). "The Nature of ATP". ATP and Biological Energy [serial on the Internet]. 
  4. ^ Jensen TE, Richter EA (March 2012). "Regulation of glucose and glycogen metabolism during and after exercise". J. Physiol. (Lond.) 590 (Pt 5): 1069–76.  
  5. ^ Liapounova NA, Hampl V, Gordon PM, Sensen CW, Gedamu L, Dacks JB (December 2006). "Reconstructing the mosaic glycolytic pathway of the anaerobic eukaryote Monocercomonoides". Eukaryotic Cell 5 (12): 2138–46.  
  6. ^ Medh, J.D. "Glycolysis" (PDF). CSUN.Edu. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  7. ^ Bailey, Regina. "10 Steps of Glycolysis". 
  8. ^ "Citric Acid Cycle" (PDF). Takusagawa’s Note. Retrieved 4 April 2013. 
  9. ^ "Biochemistry" (PDF). 
  10. ^ "Oxidative phosphorylation". W H Freeman, 2002. Retrieved 4 April 2013. 
  11. ^ Medh, J. D. "Electron Transport Chain (Overview)" (PDF). Retrieved 4 April 2013. 
  12. ^ Belenky P, Bogan KL, Brenner C (January 2007). "NAD+ metabolism in health and disease". Trends Biochem. Sci. 32 (1): 12–9.  
  13. ^ Murray, Robert F. (2003). Harper's illustrated biochemistry. New York: McGraw-Hill.  
  14. ^ Murugappa S, Kunapuli SP (2006). "The role of ADP receptors in platelet function". Front. Biosci. 11: 1977–86.  


See also

ADP in the blood is converted to adenosine by the action of ecto-ADPases, inhibiting further platelet activation via adenosine receptors.

  • P2Y1 receptors initiate platelet aggregation and shape change as a result of interactions with ADP.
  • P2Y12 receptors further amplify the response to ADP and draw forth the completion of aggregation.

Under normal conditions, small disk-shape platelets circulate the blood freely and without interaction with one another. ADP is stored in dense bodies inside blood platelets and is released upon platelet activation. ADP interacts with a family of ADP receptors found on platelets (P2Y1, P2Y12, and P2X1), which leads to platelet activation.[14]

Blood platelet activation

During the initial phases of ATP synthase enzyme; the equation for this can be written as ADP + Pi → ATP.

Mitochondrial ATP synthase complex


Oxidative phosphorylation produces 26 of the 30 molecules of ATP generated in cellular respiration by transferring electrons from NADH or FADH2 to O2 through electron carriers.[10] The energy released when electrons are passed from higher-energy NADH or FADH2 to the lower-energy O2 is required to phosphorylate ADP and once again generate ATP.[11] It is this energy coupling and phosphorylation of ADP to ATP that gives the electron transport chain the name oxidative phosphorylation.

Oxidative phosphorylation

The citric acid cycle, also known as the Krebs cycle or the TCA (tricarboxylic acid) cycle is an 8-step process that takes the pyruvate generated by glycolysis and generates 4NADH, FADH2, and GTP, which is further converted to ATP.[8] It is only in step 5, where GTP is generated, by succinyl-CoA synthetase, and then converted to ATP, that ADP is used (GTP + ADP → GDP + ATP).[9]

Citric acid cycle

, the viscous fluid that fills living cells, where the glycolytic reactions take place. cytoplasm necessary to break down glucose are found in the enzymes The [7]