Q:

What characteristics do all eukaryotic cells have in common?

A:

Eukaryotic cells all feature a nucleus, and their organelles are enclosed inside membranes. They also have a plasma membrane, which is a layer of phospholipids that surrounds the whole cell, and they feature an internal cytoskeleton.

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In comparison to prokaryotic cells, eukaryotic cells are at least 10 times larger. Their cytoplasm is composed of both ribosomes and cystol. Protected by their plasma membrane, they also have protections for each organelle in the form of individual membranes. The plasma membrane is the site for signaling and transport functions for the entire cell.

Within eukaryotic cells, the endomembrane system is a network of membranes sharing materials. The lysosomes, endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi apparatus are all part of this larger system. Eukaryotic cells also have an extracellular matrix made up of glycoproteins and proteins that other cells have secreted. This matrix sits around many different animal cells.

Eukaryotic cells move by the function of flagella or cilia, depending on the type of eukaryote. Flagella are tails at one end of the cell that whip to and fro, propelling the cell in one direction. Cilia are shorter and more numerous, and they all beat in concert to drive the cell in one particular direction.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is an eukaryotic cell?

    A:

    Eukaryotic cells are advanced cells that have, at minimum, a cellular membrane surrounding cytoplasm, a cytoskeleton and membrane-covered organelles. More advanced eukaryotic cells also contain a nucleus that protects genetic material.

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  • Q:

    How do you define "animal cell"?

    A:

    An animal cell is defined as a eukaryotic cell in which all the organelles are contained in membranes. Organelles included in an animal cell are a nucleus, the centrioles, an endoplasmic reticulum, a golgi complex, lysosomes, the mitochondria and ribosomes.

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  • Q:

    What does the cytoplasm do in an animal cell?

    A:

    In an animal cell, the cytoplasm is a semi-liquid substance that holds all the cell's organelles except the nucleus. It also acts as a repository for amino acids, sugars and other important nutrients used in the regular life of the cell. Finally, the cytoplasm stores a cell's waste until it is flushed from the cell.

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  • Q:

    In eukaryotic cells, where does glycolysis occur?

    A:

    According to the biology department at Georgia Tech, glycolysis occurs in the cytoplasm in eukaryotic cells. This process converts glucose into pyruvic acid though a chemical reaction.

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