Understanding the Cell

Have you ever wonder, about the survival of fishes and other organisms in water, plants and trees on land, animals and birds and importantly about the humans. Although they all vary in their shapes, size, colours, habitat, lifestyle, still they share one common thing among them and that is life.

So, we can say that every living being whether it is a bacteria, protozoa, pseudopodia, ant, worms, plants, or giant living being, if it has a life it is made up of one basic unit, that is the cell.

What are Cells?

Cells are basic structure or the building body of any living being, and in fact, the cell itself is a machine that can run a life, as it has various components that perform different functions and can produce the required components to survive.


Although cells may widely vary in their shapes, sizes and numbers, still they have many common features, whether it a unicellular (single cell) or multicellular. As they adapted in different environments, with the changes in time and climate they have modified and evolved a lot.

For example, Nerve cells are the long, thin that can extend up to metres and work in giving and receiving signals. Muscles cells have different roles and are different types. In the same way, plant cells provide the rigidity and structural support to the plants, the long trees have few different cells, that give them outer woody structure.

Cells are the primary and vital unit of life, they are present in numerous shapes and sizes though are recognizable through the microscopes, not with a naked eye. Cells are enclosed within a protective, selective membrane known as the cell membrane. Likewise, the wall of a house, that protect us and maintains a boundary between the external and internal environment, same is the role of the cell membrane or sometimes referred to as the plasma membrane.

Plasma membrane function as the barrier rather the selective barrier and permits the entry of nutrients and exit of the waste matter. The internal environment of the cell is well arranged into specialized and distinct compartments (also known as organelles).

Each organelle is enclosed within a separate membrane and is always ready to perform their part of the role, as soon as they will receive the signals. Out of all the organelles, the major one is the nucleus, that contains the genetic information of the particular organisms. This genetic information is essential in for the cell and individual growth, as well for the reproduction. There is only one nucleus in a cell, though there can be numbers of other organelles.

Apart from the Nucleus, Mitochondria, Lysosomes, Ribosomes, Golgi Body, Endoplasmic Reticulum, are the vital organelles present in a cell. But the most important factor is the platform upon which these organisms lie and performs their various functions, and that is cytoplasm.

The cytoplasm is water base fluid, that maintains the interior environment of a cell, it is the place where all the cellular organelles are present and serve as a podium for the various chemical reaction to takes place. Other functions like, cell expansion, growth and replication are also carried at this place of the cell that is cytoplasm.

This article was the brief introduction to the cell, in the next article, we will look into details of this topic, like who discovered the cell, characteristics of cells, multicellular and unicellular differences and other terms related to it.

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