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Eukaryotic Cells – Definition, Characteristics, Structure, Functions

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A cell is characterized as the most fundamental, primary, and useful unit of every living organic entity. Basically, a phone is a construction that contains organelles that give fundamental capabilities to support itself. In any case, not all cells are something very similar. Plants have cells that are boundlessly not the same as creatures. One of the essential distinctions between the two is the shortfall of cell walls in creature cells. Cells additionally shift in size, with the biggest one in the human body being the egg or the female ovum. It estimates generally around 1 millimeter across. The littlest cell is the granule cell which is tracked down in the human cerebellum, estimating generally around 4.5 micrometers in size. The cell is divided into 2 types- Eukaryotic and prokaryotic cell

Prokaryotic Cells

Prokaryotic cells are unicellular microorganisms and perhaps of the most antiquated creature on the planet. There are many sorts of prokaryotes, some of which are extremophiles. Others are photoautotrophic, ready to create supplements from the sun’s energy. A common prokaryotic cell is comprised of a solitary layer and thusly, every one of the responses happens inside the cytoplasm. They can be free-living or can be found inside the stomach of different life forms like ruminants (cows and bison).

Eukaryotic Cells

Dissimilar to prokaryotic cells, eukaryotic cells have a core encased inside a film. All multicellular life forms are eukaryotic and they fall under the space Eukaryota. Fundamentally, eukaryotic cells are a lot bigger than prokaryotic cells, commonly having a volume multiple times more noteworthy than prokaryotic cells. Eukaryotic cells likewise have numerous layer-bound organelles committed to different life capabilities. What are Cell Organelles? The cell parts are called cell organelles. These cell organelles incorporate both film and non-layer-bound organelles, present inside the cells, and are unmistakable in their designs and works. The direction and capability are effective for the ordinary working of the cell. A couple of them are capable of giving shape and backing, though some are engaged with the headway and generation of a cell. There are different organelles present inside the cell and are characterized into three classes in view of the presence or nonappearance of film.

Organelles without Layer

The Cell wall, Ribosomes, and Cytoskeleton are non-film-bound cell organelles. They are available both in the prokaryotic cell and the eukaryotic cell.

Single-Layer Bound Organelles

Vacuole, Lysosome, Golgi Apparatus, and Endoplasmic Reticulum are single film-bound organelles present just in a eukaryotic cell.

Twofold Layer Bound Organelles

The nucleus, mitochondria, and chloroplast are twofold film-bound organelles present just in a eukaryotic cell. 

Characteristics of Eukaryotic Cells

  • Eukaryotic cells have the core encased inside the atomic layer.
  • The cell has mitochondria.
  • Flagella and cilia are the locomotory organs in a eukaryotic cell.
  • A cell wall is the furthest layer of the eukaryotic cells.
  • The cells are partitioned by a cycle called mitosis


Functions of Cell Organelles

Plasma membrane

The plasma film is likewise named a Cell Membrane or Cytoplasmic Membrane. It is a specifically porous layer of the phones, which is made out of a lipid bilayer and proteins. The plasma film is available both in plant and creature cells. Its capabilities as a specifically penetrable film, by allowing the section of particular materials all through the phone as per the necessity. In a creature cell, the cell layer capabilities by giving shape and safeguards the inward items in the cell. In light of the construction of the plasma layer, it is viewed as the liquid mosaic model. As per the liquid mosaic model, the plasma layers are subcellular structures, made of a lipid bilayer in which the protein particles are embedded.


The cytoplasm is available both in plant and creature cells. They are jam-like substances, tracked down between the cell film and the core. They are for the most part made out of the water, natural and inorganic mixtures. The cytoplasm is one of the fundamental parts of the cell, where all the cell organelles are implanted. These cell organelles contain compounds, predominantly liable for controlling all metabolic action occurring inside the cell, and are the site for the greater part of the synthetic responses inside a phone.


The core is a twofold membraned organelle tracked down in every single eukaryotic cell. It is the biggest organelle, which capabilities as the control focal point of the cell exercises and is the storage facility of the cell’s DNA. By structure, the core is dim, round, and encompassed by an atomic layer. It is a permeable film (like a cell layer) and structures a wall among cytoplasm and core. Inside the core, there are little round bodies called nucleolus. It additionally conveys a fundamental construction called chromosomes. Chromosomes are flimsy and string-like designs that convey another significant construction called quality. Qualities are a genetic unit in life forms i.e., it helps in the legacy of characteristics from one age (guardians) to another (posterity). Consequently, the core controls the characters and elements of cells in our body. The essential capability of the core is to screen cell exercises including digestion and development by utilizing DNA’s hereditary data. Nucleoli in the core are liable for the union of protein and RNA.

Endoplasmic Reticulum

The Endoplasmic Reticulum is an organization of membranous trenches loaded up with liquid. They are the vehicle arrangement of the cell, associated with shipping materials all through the cell. There are two distinct kinds of Endoplasmic Reticulum

Rough Endoplasmic Reticulum – They are made out of cisternae, tubules, and vesicles, which are tracked down all through the cell and are engaged with protein production.
Smooth Endoplasmic Reticulum – They are the capacity organelle, related to the creation of lipids, and steroids, and are furthermore answerable for detoxifying the cell.


Mitochondria are known as the forces to be reckoned with in the cell as they produce energy-rich atoms for the cell. The mitochondrial genome is acquired maternally in a few organic entities. It is a twofold film-bound, hotdog-formed organelle, found in practically all eukaryotic cells. The twofold layers partition its lumen into two unmistakable watery compartments. The inward compartment is known as a ‘network’ which is collapsed into cristae while the external layer shapes a ceaseless limit with the cytoplasm. They as a rule fluctuate in their size and are seen as one or the other round or oval in shape. Mitochondria are the locales of oxygen-consuming breath in the cell, produce energy as ATP, and help in the change of the particles. Mitochondria have their own roundabout DNA, RNA particles, ribosomes (the 70s), and a couple of different particles that assist in protein combination.


Plastids are huge, film-bound organelles that contain colors. In view of the sort of colors, plastids are of three kinds:

  • Chloroplasts – Chloroplasts are twofold film-bound organelles, which generally change in their shape – from a circle shape to round, discoid, oval, and strip. They are available in mesophyll cells of leaves, which store chloroplasts and other carotenoid shades. These shades are answerable for catching light energy for photosynthesis. The inward film encases a space called the stroma. Leveled circles like chlorophyll-containing structures known as thylakoids are organized in a stacked way like a heap of coins. Each heap is known as a granum (plural: grana) and the thylakoids of various grana are associated by level membranous tubules known as stromal lamella. Very much like the mitochondrial framework, the stroma of chloroplast additionally contains a twofold abandoned roundabout DNA, 70S ribosomes, and chemicals that are expected for the union of starches and proteins.
  • Chromoplasts – The chromoplasts incorporate fat-solvent, carotenoid shades like xanthophylls, carotene, and so forth which furnish the plants with their trademark tone – yellow, orange, red, and so on.
  • Leucoplasts – Leucoplasts are dismal plastids that store supplements. Amyloplasts store carbs (like starch in potatoes), aleuroplasts store proteins, and elaioplasts store oils and fats.


Ribosomes are non-film-bound and significant cytoplasmic organelles tracked down in a close relationship with the endoplasmic reticulum. Ribosomes are tracked down as minuscule particles in countless cells and are basically made out of 2/third of RNA and 1/third of protein. They are named the 70s (tracked down in prokaryotes) or 80s (tracked down in eukaryotes) The letter S alludes to the thickness and the size, known as Svedberg’s Unit. Both 70S and 80S ribosomes are made out of two subunits. Ribosomes are either enveloped inside the endoplasmic reticulum or are unreservedly followed in the cell’s cytoplasm. Ribosomal RNA and Ribosomal proteins are the two parts that together comprise ribosomes. The essential capability of the ribosomes remembers protein union for all living cells that guarantee the endurance of the cell.

Golgi Apparatus

Golgi Apparatus is likewise named Golgi Complex. It is a film-bound organelle, which is mostly made out of a progression of straightened, stacked pockets called cisternae. This cell organelle is essentially answerable for shipping, adjusting, and bundling proteins and lipids to designated objections. Golgi Apparatus is tracked down inside the cytoplasm of a cell and is available in both plant and creature cells.


Microbodies are layer-bound, minute, vesicular organelles, tracked down in both plant and creature cells. They contain different compounds and proteins and can be envisioned exclusively under the electron magnifying lens.


It is a persistent organization of filamentous proteinaceous designs that run all through the cytoplasm, from the core to the plasma layer. It is tracked down in every single living cell, eminently in the eukaryotes. The cytoskeleton network is made out of various kinds of proteins that can partition quickly or dismantle contingent on the necessity of the cells. The essential capabilities incorporate giving the shape and mechanical protection from the phone against deformity, and the contractile idea of the fibers helps in motility during cytokinesis.

Cilia and Flagella

Cilia are hair-like projections, little designs, present external to the cell wall and work like paddles to either move the cell or the extracellular liquid. Flagella are somewhat greater and are answerable for cell development. The eukaryotic flagellum fundamentally varies from its prokaryotic partner. The center of the cilium and flagellum is called an axoneme, which contains nine sets of slowly organized fringe microtubules and a bunch of focal microtubules running lined up with the hub. The focal tubules are interconnected by a scaffold and are implanted by a focal sheath. One of the fringe microtubular matches is likewise interconnected to the focal sheath by an outspread talked. Thus there is a sum of 9 outspread spokes. The cilia and flagella rise up out of centriole-like designs called basal bodies.

Centrosome and Centrioles

The centrosome organelle is comprised of two commonly opposite structures known as centrioles. Every centriole is made out of 9 similarly dispersed fringe fibrils of tubulin protein, and the fibril is a bunch of interlinked trios. The centerpiece of the centriole is known as a center and is proteinaceous. The center interfaces the fringe fibrils by means of outspread talked, which is comprised of proteins. The centrioles form the basal collections of the cilia and flagella bringing about axle strands during cell division.


Vacuoles are for the most part characterized as capacity air pockets of unpredictable shapes which are tracked down in cells. They are liquid-filled organelles encased by a film. The vacuole stores the food or different supplements that a cell could have to get by. Furthermore, it additionally stores side effects. The side effects are ultimately tossed out by vacuoles. Consequently, the remainder of the cell is safeguarded from tainting. The creature and its established cells have different sizes and numbers of vacuoles. Contrasted with the creatures, plant cells have bigger vacuoles.

Conceptual Questions

Question 1: Is the cell the most essential unit of life?


A cell is the littlest and most essential type of life. Robert Hooke, quite possibly the earliest researcher to utilize a light magnifying lens, found the cell in 1665. In all living things, including microorganisms, plants, creatures, and people, the cell was characterized as the most fundamental primary and useful unit.

Question 2: Why Lysosomes are known as suicide bags?


Lysosomes are called the suicidal bags because they are capable of breaking down or digesting all the wastes, dead and damaged cells.

Question 3: What are the functions of the cell?


The essential functions of the cell include:

  • The cell provides support and structure to the body.
  • It facilitates growth by mitosis.
  • It helps in reproduction.
  • Provides energy and allows the transport of substances.

Question 4: What is Nucleoid? 


Nucleoid is a non-membrane, irregular-shaped cell organelle present in all prokaryotic cells. They are the carriers of the genetic material of a cell.

Question 5: The largest membrane-bound organelle in a eukaryotic cell is?


Organelles are special and organized structures seen in living cells. Some of the membrane-bound organelles are vacuoles, nucleus, chloroplasts, lysosomes etc. The nucleus is the largest organelle in the cell.

Question 6: Difference between Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic cells?



Prokaryotic cell

Eukaryotic cell

Size  diameter 1 – 10 μmdiameter 5 – 100 μm
NucleusNo true nucleus, single chromosomes,  nuclear membrane absent.True nucleus, nucleus membrane is present, is present, more than one chromosomes is present.
Organelles             Membrane- bound organelles are absent.Membrane- bound organelles are present.
RibosomesRibosomes are 70S and randomly scattered.Ribosomes are 80S, can be free or attached  to ER.
Cell DivisionCell divides by simple fission.Cell divides by mitosos or by meiosis.

Question 7: Which cell organelle is called the Powerhouse of the cell?


Mitochondria is the cell organelle and is called the Powerhouse of the cell as they carry out the cellular respiration and generate the energy molecules called ATP or Adenosine Triphosphate.

Last Updated : 17 Jan, 2023
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