Q:

What is the function of endoplasmic reticulum?

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Quick Answer

In addition to other jobs, the endoplasmic reticulum creates and folds proteins and then carries these synthesized substances to the Golgi apparatus via the vesicles. The endoplasmic reticulum also executes sorting activities for the cell's proteins. However, the precise duties carried out by the endoplasmic reticulum vary by both species and cell type.

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What is the function of endoplasmic reticulum?
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Full Answer

All cells are composed of numerous, smaller components commonly called organelles; the endoplasmic reticulum is one such organelle. Other examples of organelles include the nucleus, the mitochondria and the Golgi apparatus. The endoplasmic reticulum is one of the largest organelles in most cells and also plays a large role in maintaining the cell's shape.

Two primary parts make up the endoplasmic reticulum: a cytoskeleton and numerous sac-like features called cisternae. There are two types of endoplasmic reticulum; one is called the smooth endoplasmic reticulum, while the other is called the rough endoplasmic reticulum. The primary difference between the two types is that rough endoplasmic reticulum carries a number of ribosomes on its surface, while the smooth endoplasmic reticulum does not. However, as these ribosomes attach and release from the endoplasmic reticulum over time, smooth sections can become rough and vice versa; this happens as the cell's metabolic needs change.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Who discovered the endoplasmic reticulum?

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    The endoplasmic reticulum was discovered in 1945 by researchers Ernest Fullman, Keith Porter and Albert Claude. The endoplasmic reticulum is separated into two categories. The parts of the organelle with ribosomes on the surface are called rough and areas without ribosomes are smooth.

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  • Q:

    What is the definition of a smooth endoplasmic reticulum?

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    The smooth endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is the part of the ER that does not have ribosomes attached to the cytoplasmic side of the membrane. It forms a tubular structure, distinct from the rough ER that is evenly distributed throughout the cytoplasm.

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  • Q:

    What does the rough endoplasmic reticulum do?

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    The rough endoplasmic reticulum synthesizes proteins. Most of the body's cells, except for red blood cells and sperm cells, contain a rough endoplasmic reticulum, and the exact proteins it synthesizes depend upon the type of cell.

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  • Q:

    What is the shape of the endoplasmic reticulum?

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    Endoplasmic reticulum is composed of two different regions that each have a distinct shape. Rough endoplasmic reticulum is composed of a series of flattened sacs with attached ribosomes on the membrane. Smooth endoplasmic reticulum consists of a tube-shaped network and does not have attached ribosomes.

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