Q2key - MCB 11 Spring 2006 Quiz 2-Key M D Alper March16...

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MCB 11 M. D. Alper Spring 2006 Quiz 2 -Key March16, 2006 1. (15 pts) A student observes the binding of oxygen to hemoglobin in the lungs and the release of that oxygen in the brain. Recognizing that systems in nature move towards lower energy, he assumes that HbO is at a lower energy than Hb +O in the lungs while Hb + O is at a lower energy than HbO in the brain. a. Is this true? Explain. NO. The free energy difference between two molecules or groups of molecules is characteristic only of the nature of the molecules themselves, not their amounts or environment. b. Is there any (other, depending on the answer to part a) factor that is different in the lungs and the brain that can (assist) in the efficient delivery of oxygen from the lungs to the brain. The major factor here is the concentration of oxygen. Given the fixed equilibrium constant Keq = [Hb] [O] / [HbO] then at high [O] in the lungs, the majority of the Hb is in the HbO form, while at low [O] in the brain, the majority is in the Hb form. Thus, in the lungs the Hb binds oxygen and in
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