Each list begins with basic conceptual vocabulary you need to know for MCAT questions and proceeds to advanced terms that might appear in context in MCAT passages. The terms are links to Wikipedia articles.
Gluconeogenesis is the generation of glucose from non-sugar carbon substrates like pyruvate, lactate, glycerol, and glucogenic amino acids.
Hypoglycemia, also known as low blood sugar, is a fall in blood sugar to levels below normal.
Hyperglycemia is a condition in which an excessive amount of glucose circulates in the blood plasma.
A glucogenic amino acid is an amino acid that can be converted into glucose through gluconeogenesis.
Phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase
Phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase is an enzyme in the lyase family used in the metabolic pathway of gluconeogenesis. It converts oxaloacetate into phosphoenolpyruvate and carbon dioxide.
Fructose bisphosphatase
Fructose bisphosphatase is an enzyme that converts fructose-1,6-bisphosphate to fructose 6-phosphate in gluconeogenesis and the Calvin cycle.
Glucose 6-phosphatase
Glucose 6-phosphatase is an enzyme that hydrolyzes glucose 6-phosphate, resulting in the creation of a phosphate group and free glucose.
Pyruvate carboxylase
Pyruvate carboxylase is an enzyme of the ligase class that catalyzes the irreversible carboxylation of pyruvate to form oxaloacetate. Oxaloacetate can then either proceed to the citric acid cycle or to gluconeogenesis.
HMG-CoA reductase
HMG-CoA reductase is the first enzyme of the mevalonate pathway that produces terpenes, terpenoids, steroids and various other biomolecules.
The Cahill cycle, also known as the alanine cycle, is the series of reactions in which amino groups and carbons from muscle are transported to the liver.
Cori cycle
The Cori cycle refers to the cycling of lactate produced by red blood cells and muscle (during anaerobic respiration) back into glucose.
Alanine cycle
The alanine cycle is quite similar to the Cori cycle. When muscles produce lactate during times of decreased oxygen, they also produce alanine which is shuttled to the liver where it is used to make glucose.
Lactic acidosis
Lactic acidosis is a medical condition characterized by the buildup of lactate (especially L-lactate) in the body,
Glycosuria is the excretion of glucose into the urine.

The Integrated MCAT Course is a trademark of Wisebridge Learning Systems. Unless otherwise specified, the works of the Integrated Course are published under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial ShareAlike License. MCAT is a registered trademark of the Association of American Medical Colleges, which does not endorse the Integrated MCAT Course. The Integrated MCAT Course offers our customers no guarantees regarding eventual performance on the MCAT.