Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is probably the most important phosphate compound of all. It is the universal energy “currency” for all known life forms. ATP and its reaction products provide or store energy for all organism activity. The reaction takes place within the cell and is responsible for a range of functions, including metabolism, DNA synthesis, and cellular motility.1

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ATP consists of a central sugar molecule, ribose (which also happens to be the foundation for DNA) (green in the figure) bounded to a base, adenine (purple), on one side (adenine plus ribose = adenosine) and to three phosphate groups on...

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