Glycolysis In Ancient Egypt?!


Glycolysis is involved in the process in which yeast ferments a starch sources (in beer barley or malt) in our very converted and sometimes fattening drink that we men love to enjoy during our football matches (I’ll drink to that).


Egyptians were the first peoples to perfect the process of fermenting beer by using yeast mixed with malt around 2200BC. In alcoholic fermentation the process that makes our beloved drink, the starches are first broken down to pyruvic acid (a ketone/ simple alpha-keto acid), via glycolysis, and then 2 enzymes (pyruvate decarboxylase and alcoholic dehydrogenase) then convert the pyruvic acid into CO2 and ethanol
and tada… beer!!!
(Berg and Tymoczko et al. 2007).


Factoid: During the construction of the pyramids labourers were paid in beer instead of gold so in essence:

no glycolysis= no beer= no pyramids of Giza.

So take a moment to thank glycolysis the next time you take a drink.


Berg, Jeremy M, John L Tymoczko and Lubert Stryer. Biochemistry. New York: W.H.Freeman & Co Ltd, 2007. “Ancient Egypt Society: Beer.” 2010. (accessed 08 Mar 2014).


Contributors: Christine, Le Frenchie, Roi (Editor)


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