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Comparing the structure of a typical animal cell and a typical plant cell.

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Introduction

Comparing the structure of a typical animal cell and a typical plant cell Cells were discovered in 1665 when English scientist, Robert Hooke studied cork cells. Due to the lack of modern technology and quality microscopes, Hooke's diagrams were not detailed. Hooke represented the cells as empty spaces or pores surrounded by a wall. However, this discovery led to the cell theory. A CELL IS THE BASIC UNIT OF STRUCTURE AND FUNCTION OF AN ORGANISM. All cells, whether plant or animal, have individual parts in order to carry out specific function within the organism. Not only this, but specific cells within the organisms have evolved in order to better carry out their specific tasks. For example, red blood cells have no nucleus in order to carry the maximum amount of oxygen around the body. Root hair cells have a large surface area in order to take in water via osmosis and nutrients via active transport. In this essay, the fundamental similarities and differences between the structure of a typical animal cell and plant cell will be discussed, along with reasons behind these differences. The structure of a typical animal Cell The cell membrane is made up of a bilayer of phospholipids. ...read more.

Middle

These sacks have membranes formed from cell surface membrane known as the tonoplast. The Structure of a typical Plant Cell Plant cells and animal cells are comparable in that some of their organelles inside the cell are alike and some differ. For example plant cells also possess a nucleus, which contain genetic information to reproduce. The cell also contains a cell membrane, which has a similar structure in order to allow substances to pass in and out of the cell. However, where the membrane solely surrounds the animal cell, the plant cell has a cell wall. In the cell wall, long chains of cellulose link together to form ribbon-like microfibrils. The cellulose microfibrils are set in a gel like matrix containing polysaccharides. There are two inner layer made from this cellulose. The outer layer of the cell wall is called the middle lamella and is made from calcium pectate. This layer is used to cement neighbouring cell walls together. The complex structure of the cell wall, means that as well as being strong it is also able to give a little to the withstand high pressures within the cell. The cell wall is fully permeable to water and solutes and the gel like matrix is hydrophilic, meaning that the cell walls normal state is saturated like a sponge. ...read more.

Conclusion

Substances needed to be stored in the vacuole of an animal, such as waste products or energy stored will either be digested by enzymes and/or secreted from the cell individually. Whereas in the plant cell, all the substances are stored in the same vacuole. The cell wall, with its strong structure gives support to the cell and ensures that it maintains a constant shape. This role is not only vital to the individual cell in maintaining their shape, but is also vital in the overall structure of the plant as an organism. On the other hand, animal cell do not have cell wall. This is due to the fact that generally the overall structure of animals as organisms does not rely on the cells individual make up for cell. The different types of structural cells for example bone cells, work together to form bone tissue, which then makes up the skeleton. So, the differences between plant and animal cells are due to their individual function in order to contribute to the overall function of the organism. Although in this essay, I have only discussed the structure of a typical animal cell and plant cell. However, as I mentioned earlier, through evolution, the structure of some cell have developed in order to better carry out their individual roles more successfully. Alice Unwin 09/05/2007 ...read more.

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