Plasma Membrane: The plasma membrane separates the inside of the cell
from the outside environment. It consists of a phospholipid bilayer that is
made of proteins and lipids.
Nucleus: The nucleus is composed of a lipid bilayer to separate
the interior from the outside cytoplasm. Pores in the membrane allow for
movement between the nucleus and the cytoplasm. The function of the nucleus is
to store DNA.
Nucleolus: The nucleolus is a dense organelle that is not
membrane bound and is found inside the nucleus. Its purpose is to produce rRNA
for the production of ribosomes and protein synthesis.
Chromosome: Chromosomes are composed of large bound segments of
DNA, RNA, and proteins. Their purpose is to hold the genome of the cell in a
tight, packed manor.
RNA: RNA is key in protein synthesis; in a process called
transcriptions, RNA copies DNA which is then read by ribosomes to form
proteins. RNA is composed of the four nucleotides adenine, cytosine, guanine,
and uracil. The structure is formed in a single strand with the addition of a
DNA: DNA is composed of the four nucleotides cytosine,
adenine, guanine, and thymine in a twisted double helix shape. DNA stores all
of the genetic information in a cell.
Ribosome: Tasked with reading mRNA and translating it to
produce strings of amino acids that form proteins. Ribosomes have two major
components, a small subunit that reads the RNA and a larger subunit that joins
the amino acids together.
Reticulum: The smooth ER has no ribosomes
attached and is involved in lipid metabolism. It is composed of membrane
enclosed tubules and sacs and is the largest organelle in most cells.
Reticulum: Same basic composition
as the smooth ER but with the addition of ribosomes attached to the outer
membrane which gives it its “rough: look. By holding ribosomes, the rough ER
helps with protein synthesis.
Golgi Apparatus: The main function of this organelle is to process and
sort proteins for further transport throughout the cell as they arrive from the
rough ER. Composed of a convex side where proteins arrive and a concave side
where the proteins depart.
Lysosome: Lysosomes are membrane enclosed organelles that
contain enzymes to breakdown unwanted biological components of the cells such
as proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates.
Peroxisome: Peroxisomes contain enzymes that carry out oxidation
reactions that provide metabolic energy. They have a similar enzyme containing
enclosed membrane structure to lysosomes.
Vesicle: Vesicles are small membrane enclosed sacs that are
responsible for the transportation of substances within the cell and the
transportation of substances between cells.
Mitochondria: Surrounded by a double membrane system that is
separated by an open gap. The inside consists of a matrix of folds that holds
the mitochondria’s own DNA. Its purpose is to break down carbohydrates and
fatty acids to produce ATP which is eventually used for energy production.
Microfilament: Help form the cytoskeleton of the cell which provides
structure since cytoplasm is just a liquid. Microfilaments are long, thin
string like proteins that are mostly composed of actin.
Microtubule: Thicker tube-like proteins composed mostly of tubulin
that form the cytoskeleton along with microfilaments. Also help with movement
of the cell.
Filament: Provide structure to
cells through mechanical strength. They are in between the size of microfilaments
and microtubules. They are composed of a variety of proteins depending on the
type of cell.
Cytoplasm: A liquid that fills all the gaps between the
organelles in a cell. It is a gel like substance that is mostly composed of
Centriole: Help in the formation of spindle fibers that
separate chromosomes during cell division; composed mostly of microtubules