Biology Short Notes: Respiration

Check Short Notes: Respiration from Biology section on e akhabaar

The process of releasing energy from food is called respiration.

The process of respiration involves taking in oxygen (of air) into the cells, using it for releasing energy by burning food, and then eliminating the waste products (carbon dioxide and water) from the body.

  • Respiration is essential for life because it provide energy for carrying out all the life processes which are necessary to keep the organism alive.

Difference between respiration and breathing



The mechanism by which organisms obtain oxygen from the air and release carbon dioxide is called breathing. Respiration includes breathing as well as the oxidation of food in the cells of the organism to release energy.
Breathing is a physical process. Respiration includes physical as well as biochemical process of oxidation of food.
The process of breathing involves the lungs of the organism. The process of respiration involves the lungs and mitochondria of the cells.

Storing the energy released during respiration

  • The energy produced during respiration is stored in the form of ATP molecules in the cells of the body and used by the organism as when required.
  • ADP (Adenosine Di-Phosphate, low energy content), Inorganic Phosphate (Pi) and ATP (Adenosine Tri-Phosphate, high energy content) are the substances present inside a cell.
  • The energy released during respiration is used to make ATP molecules form ADP and inorganic phosphate.

  • Thus, energy is stored in the form of ATP which is also known as energy currency of the cell.

Types of Respiration:

In most of the cases, the organisms carry out respiration by using oxygen. There are, however some organisms which carry out respiration without using oxygen. Based on this, we have two types respiration:

  1. Aerobic respiration : takes place  oxygen
  2. Anaerobic respiration : takes place without the presence of oxygen

Respiration In Plants

  • Like animals, plants also need energy. The plants get this energy by the process of respiration. Plants also use oxygen of air for respiration and release carbon dioxide.
  • The respiration in plants differs from the animals in three respects:
Respiration in plants Respiration in animals
All the parts of a plant (like root, stem and leaves) perform respiration individually. An animal performs respiration as a single unit.
During respiration in plants, there is a little transport of respiratory gases from one part of the plant to the other. Respiratory gases are usually transported over long distance inside an animal during respiration.
The respiration in plants occurs at a slow rate.

The respiration in animals occurs at a much faster rate.

  • Plants have a branching shape, so they have quite a large surface area in comparison to their volume. Therefore, diffusion alone can supply all the cells of the plants with as much oxygen as they need for respiration.
  • Diffusion occurs in the roots, stems and leaves of plants.
  • Net gaseous exchange in the leaves of the plant: net gas exchange in leaves at night is: O2 diffuses in; CO2 diffuses out.

Respiration in Animals

Different animals have different modes of respiration.

Animals Respiratory organ
Unicellular animals like Amoeba, Planaria Cell membrane
Earthworm Skin
Aquatic animals like Fish, Prawns Gills
Insects like Grasshopper, Cockroach Spiracles and tracheae
Land animals like Humans, birds Lungs

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