Q:

What is the function of cellulose?

A:

Cellulose makes up most of the tough cell walls surrounding plant cells and enables plants to stand upright, according to Education Portal. It is the major component of plants that makes the branches, stems and leaves very strong.

Cellulose is a valuable polysaccharide and the most abundant organic compound in the planet, notes Education Portal. All plants are composed of polysaccharides, which are large sugar molecules consisting of single sugar units. The four common polysaccharides are cellulose, chitin, glycogen and starch. Cellulose has a unique, rigid structure that serves an important function in plants. Its molecules are joined together using hydrogen bonds and are arranged parallel to one another, forming a long, cable-like structure that merges with other cellulose molecules. This creates the strong support structure that allows plants to stand upright.

Education Portal explains that the strength of cellulose makes it useful in various synthetic products, including plastics, fabrics, cosmetics, lotion and carpeting. Cellulose is also an essential component of paper, cotton fabric and lumber. Moreover, cellulose plays a key role in digestion, as it is an insoluble fiber that does not break down when passing through the digestive system. Insoluble fiber is important in a person's diet, because it allows the digestive tract to keep moving.


Is this answer helpful?

Similar Questions

  • Q:

    What is the function of a stigma in plants?

    A:

    The function of the stigma in a flower is as a pollen receptor. The stigma is a sticky tip on the top of a carpel.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Why are plants important?

    A:

    Plants provide food to people and animals, regulate the water cycle, create oxygen and provide a habitat for other species. Without plants, life on Earth would not be sustainable for most species, including humans.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Why are plants green?

    A:

    Plants are green because of a pigment called chlorophyll. Chlorophyll absorbs all colors of visible light except for green, which is reflected. Thus, the reflection of the green part of visible light is what causes plants to look green.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    Why do we need plants?

    A:

    Plants are necessary because they are a primary food source and provide the oxygen that is vital to animals' and humans' existence. A majority of the calories that people consume comes from plants, and most meat comes from animals that eat plants. Plants are at the bottom of the food chain, and animals could not survive without them. Plants also release the oxygen that humans and animals breathe.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore