Animal cells have irregular shapes.
The parts that make up an animal cell are:
- Cell membrane
The nucleus is a membrane-bound organelle in a cell. The nucleus contains genetic material. It controls the cell’s activities, such as growth and metabolism. The nucleus carries genes and other structures that contain hereditary information. Inside the nucleus are small bodies called nucleoli.
The cell membrane is also known as the plasma membrane. The cell membrane is made of a semi-permeable lipid bilayer. It controls the movement of substances that go in and out of the cell. It is able to do this as it has a structure that is permeable to some substances and not others. You can think of the cell membrane as a gatekeeper. It separates the interior of the cell from the outside environment in order to control what foes in and out of the cell in order to protect it.
The cytoplasm is a jelly-like liquid that fills the inside of a cell. The cytoplasm contains nutrients, salts, and other membrane-bound organelles. Many chemical reactions also occur in the cytoplasm, for example, the chemical reaction of respiration in mitochondria.
Mitochondria are known as the powerhouse of the cell. Mitochondria are membrane-bound organelles. They contain enzymes for aerobic respiration, and this is where most energy is released from respiration. The chemical energy that is produced by the mitochondria is then stored in small molecules called ATP (adenosine triphosphate).
The ribosome is a small organelle found in the cytoplasm where protein synthesis occurs. The ribosome structure is made of RNA (ribonucleic acid) and protein. The ribosome forms proteins by reading the mRNA (messenger RNA) sequence and then translating the specific genetic code into a specific string of amino acids. The amino acids form a long chain that folds to create proteins.
Although all animals cells are made up of the same components, they don’t all look the same. The reason for this is because animal cells are specialised for their functions. Examples of animal cells are red blood cells and sperm cells.
Plant cells have regular shapes.
The parts that make up an plant cell are:
- Cell membrane
- Cell wall
The main differences between animal and plant cells are that plant cells have a cell wall surrounding the membrane, chloroplasts, and a vacuole.
The cell wall is made from cellulose fibers. The cell wall surrounds the cell membrane, this is what gives the plant cell a unique rectangular shape. It helps to strengthen the cell and provides support for the plant.
Chloroplasts are organelles that contain green pigment. The green pigment is called chlorophyll. Chlorophyll contains light energy for photosynthesis. It also contains enzymes required for photosynthesis to take place. Plant cells also have a permanent vacuole. This is filled with fluid or cell sap.
The vacuole provides installation for the cell and the plant. The vacuole also stores sugars.
Although all plant cells are made up of the same components, they don’t all look the same. The reason for this is because plant cells are specialised for their functions. Examples of phloem cells and xylem cells.