All cells produce substances that are essential for them to function properly. For example, in plants, specific metabolic pathways can produce glucose and chlorophyll.
Metabolic pathways are integrated and controlled enzyme-catalysed reactions within a cell.
In animals, specific metabolic pathways can produce vitamins and haemoglobin.
Metabolic pathways can be described as a series of chemical reactions that:
Thousands of metabolic pathways exist and most involve multiple steps – some can be hundreds of steps long! All metabolic pathways together form a complex network that is necessary to maintain life.