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The Structure of Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic cells.

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The Structure of Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic cells The prokaryotic cell developed first, pro meaning before and karyon meaning nucleus. The evolution of prokaryotic cells preceded that of eukaryotic cells by 2 billion years. This group of cells are now known as bacteria and archae. This simple cell has evolved into the eukaryotic (true nucleus) cells, a more complex cell, generally found in higher organisms such as plants and animals. The fundamental difference between the two cells is the presence of a nucleus in the eukaryotic cell. Though the prokaryotic cell contains genetic information, it is suspended freely in the cytoplasm. The eukaryotic cell is also considerably larger than the prokaryotic, it possesses an endoplasmic reticulum along with many other complex organelles and synthesises larger ribosomes. On the other hand all prokaryotic cells have cell walls, where as it is generally only the eukaryotic cells of plants that possess cell walls. In this essay, the similarities and differences between these two cells will be discussed along with exploring which cell is more primitive and why. The Prokaryotic Cell The Eukaryotic Cell Scientists believe that the eukaryotic cell originated from several different types of prokaryotic cell, hence the similarities between the two cell types. The contents of both cells are suspended in the cytoplasm, due to the merging of cells in order to form the eukaryotic cell; the structure of the cytoplasm is the same in both cells. ...read more.


Ribosomes are made in the densest part of the nucleus, the nucleolus, and then need to be transported around the cell in order to make proteins. Also suspended in the eukaryotic cytoplasm are the mitochondrion and also, unique to plant cells, the chloroplasts. The mitochondria in the eukaryotic cell are responsible for producing ATP. They are known as the powerhouses of the cell. A double membrane binds them and the inner membrane is folded into partitions known as cristae. The prokaryotic cell does not contain this specific organelle either. However a fold in the plasma membrane, known as the mesosome, is the site of respiration. Smaller folds in the membrane can also carry out similar functions. The chloroplasts, typically found in a plant cell, contain chlorophyll and convert light energy into food substances such as glucose. These chloroplasts are also contained in a membrane. Some prokaryotic cells photosynthesise. Those that do possess small chromatophores that contain a chemical similar to chlorophyll called bacteriochlorphyll, a light absorbing pigment. This chemical is chemically simpler than chlorophyll, which indicates that the process of photosynthesis in prokaryotic cells and eukaryotic cells was chemically different. The cytoplasm of the prokaryotic cell also contains food storage particles, where chemicals are stored that can be converted into energy. ...read more.


These two groups of cells have very different means of sexual reproduction. Where the eukaryotic cell has a complex method, involving many complicated organelles such as the centriole and spindle. The prokaryotic cell has no real method of sexual reproduction. However some DNA exchange can occur between the cell walls. Concerning sex pili. . The final major difference in the two cells is the size. Where the eukaryotic cell measure 10 to 100 ?m, the prokaryotic cell only measures 0.5 to 10?m. So in conclusion, it is evident that the prokaryotic cell is much more primitive than the eukaryotic cell. Its organelles have a much simpler structure and function. Also, the evolution of unicellular organism, such as bacteria, into multicellular organism such as mammals plays a major role in the difference between these two groups. Where prokaryotic cell contain the mechanisms to exist on their own, eukaryotic cells often exist as much more complicated organisms with different cells working together to carry out complicated processes such as mitosis, sexual reproduction, photosynthesis etc. In making these comparisons it is also important to take into accounts the ways in which cells have evolved in order to adapt to their surroundings. As the percentage of gases in the atmosphere has change, so the chemical make up of the earlier cells evolved. Alice Unwin Essay 2: Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic Cells. ...read more.

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