AAT Bioquest

How is ATP produced from AMP or ADP?

Posted September 13, 2022


The enzyme ATP synthase plays a role in producing ATP from ADP or AMP. The enzyme helps to synthesize ATP from ADP and an inorganic phosphate in the mitochondria. What triggers this is the build of the proton gradient in the mitochondrial matrix, which is used by ATP synthase. This is known as PMF or the free energy released by passive transport of protons from the mitochondrial matrix into the cytoplasm. Another process that helps to produce ATP is the oxidation of glucose during aerobic respiration. This releases energy that is then used to synthesize ATP from ADP and inorganic phosphate (Pi). Fats and proteins can also be used as an alternative of six-carbon glucose during respiration.

AMP can be synthesized to ATP through a series of reactions. The first step is as follows: AMP+ATP→ 2 ADP. This is done with the enzyme adenylate kinase, to catalyze the conversion of phosphates. The next next step is as follows: ADP+Pi → ATP. Thus, compared to ADP, AMP has to go through an extra step to become ATP. 

Additional resources

Physiology, Adenosine Triphosphate

Cell Signaling

ATP assays for measuring cell proliferation

Biochemical assays for measuring ATP activity, formation or depletion

How to quantitate ATP induced calcium flux inside mammalian cells using fluorescent calcium indicators