What is the function of the large central vacuole in plant cells?
Credit:Ed ReschkePhotolibraryGetty Images
Q:

What is the function of the large central vacuole in plant cells?

A:

Quick Answer

The main function of the large central vacuole in plant cells is to provide structural support; however, it serves other functions such as protection, storage, growth and waste disposal. This large central vacuole typically occupies at least 80 percent of the space in the cell unlike the vacuoles of animal cells which are smaller in size and commonly used to transport substances or temporarily storing materials.

 Know More

Full Answer

A membrane known as the tonoplast is used to enclose this large central vacuole. As the cell matures, this large central vacuole gradually develops as a result of fusion of smaller vacuoles that are derived from Golgi apparatus and the endoplasmic reticulum. The central vacuole has a number of roles in plant cells, some of which include storing of salts, nutrients, pigments, minerals, proteins, aiding the growth of the plant and playing a vital structural role for the plant.

When the conditions are optimum, water fills the vacuoles to the point that they exert pressure against the walls of the cells. This helps in maintaining the plant’s structural integrity and enables the plant to grow larger without synthesizing new cytoplasm. The importance of the structural capability of the vacuole is related to its capacity to control turgor pressure, which dictates the cell’s rigidity.

Learn more about Botany
Sources:

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are secondary metabolites in plants?

    A:

    Secondary metabolites produced by plants are chemicals that have no defined role in the plant's metabolism, including growth, photosynthesis, reproduction and other primary functions. Many secondary metabolites produced by plants play key roles in human lives.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • 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.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the function of a leaf on a plant?

    A:

    The function of a leaf on a plant is to store a range of cells that are critical to conducting photosynthesis. Leaves have different layers with different cells, but many of these cells contain structures called chloroplasts, which contain the pigment chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is a pigment that absorbs light from the sun, and most of the chlorophyll in a plant is located in leaves.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the function of the ribs?

    A:

    The ribs have three important functions: support, respiration and protection. There are a total of 24 ribs, which are all attached to the thoracic vertebrae. The top seven are referred to as true ribs, while the bottom five are called false ribs.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under: