What is an anaerobic pathway in which pyruvic acid is converted into lactic acid?

1 Answer

Lactic acid fermentation is the anaerobic pathway.


In the presence of oxygen most organisms will go through cellular respiration to produce ATP, but some organisms have developed a way to create ATP without oxygen. This process is called fermentation.

Fermentation is much less efficient (aka it creates much less ATP than aerobic cellular respiration), it is only done in anaerobic conditions (when there is no air.)

There are many different types of fermentation: one that occurs in your body is lactic acid fermentation. It starts with same raw materials as aerobic cellular respiration minus the oxygen. Glucose still goes through glycolysis which creates the pyruvic acid and net 2 ATP, but in order to regenerate more NAD the pyruvic acid is then broken down into lactic acid.


In your muscles when you don't get enough oxygen, they will continue to work using lactic acid fermentation. But as lactic acid starts to build up in your muscles, your muscles start to cramp up. Sending a message...hey dummy stop running!