tricarboxylic acid cycle

Last reviewed 01/2018

The tricarboxylic acid cycle is a cyclical series of reactions whereby acetate residues are oxidized to yield energy and carbon dioxide. All the reactions take place within mitochondria.

The cycle functions as:

  • a final common pathway of fat, carbohydrate and protein metabolism
  • the source of a number of carbon chain intermediates e.g.:
    • succinyl-CoA can produce porphyrins
    • oxaloglutarate and oxaloacetate can produce amino acids
  • the major source of energy production in a cell respiring aerobically