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Difference Between Fermentation and Respiration

Fermentation vs Respiration

In certain metabolic processes, in particular with biochemistry, students take part in learning about the varying processes that are vital for the cells to function and fulfill their roles inside the body.

An example of this is fermentation and respiration. Let us tackle the differences.

Respiration is a natural process to every living thing in which in order to produce energy, oxygen is needed to utilize the breaking down of the molecules inside the cell. As we all know, ATP or adenosine triphosphate is the primary form of energy of the cells. When these cells break down and undergo respiration, the stored energy inside the cells is released and being broken down. In order to do that, oxygen is needed in order to release that stored energy. Other functions of cellular respiration involve contractions of the muscles and impulse generation.

Fermentation, on the other hand, is the opposite of respiration. In fermentation, oxygen is not utilized. It uses glucose, produces ATP and another substance as a product. In the process of fermentation, there is less energy being produced than respiration. It also gets its energy directly from the glucose. In order for a yogurt to undergo fermentation, lactate bacteria is being added to milk. The lactate bacteria will then ferment it. Thus, the final product is a yogurt with a sour taste. In other products such as beer, the process can be overhauled by sealing the alcoholic beverage. In this manner, at the latter part of fermentation, it will produce beer as its final product. It is also the same with root beer.

Due to the process of respiration, all of the living things in this planet are able to breathe. We humans breathe because of the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide inside our lungs. For fermentation, food and other beverages will not exist without this important process. In our body, fermentation acts via pepsin and rennin which acts to ferment and soften the food we eat to aid in the digestion and absorption of nutrients.


1.Respiration or anabolic respiration involves the use of oxygen while fermentation involves the use of enzymes such as glucose.
2.Respiration and fermentation are vital to organisms as without these two processes we won’t be existing on this planet.

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