The process of fermentation allows the production of a small amount of ATP without oxygen. This is what allows glycolysis to continue producing ATP when oxygen is unavailable.
Lactic acid fermentation occurs in muscle cells
- glycolysis splits glucose into two pyruvate molecules
- pyruvate and NADH enter fermentation
- energy from NADH converts pyruvate into lactic acid
- NADH is changed back into NAD+
Alcoholic fermentation is similar to lactic acid fermentation, this is what makes fermentation and its products important in food production (yogurt, cheese, and bread).