What is the function of the vacuole?
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Q:

What is the function of the vacuole?

A:

Quick Answer

The function of the vacuole depends on the type of cell in which it is found. One of the main functions of the vacuole is to isolate materials that might be harmful to the cell.

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Vacuoles are membrane-bound organelles that are found in cells of plants, animals and fungi. Plant cells tend to have a large central vacuole, while the vacuoles in animal cells tend to be smaller. The main function of vacuoles is to contain the waste products of the cells and isolate them from the rest of the organelles and the cytoplasm. Vacuoles maintain an acidic pH internally. This allows them to denature misfolded proteins transferred to the vacuole from the cytoplasm. The vacuoles can also help remove unwanted or toxic materials from the cells by exporting them to the cell membrane, where they are released to the outside surroundings of the cell. This process is known as exocytosis. New vacuoles can be formed in cells such as amoeba in order to engulf material that is outside the cell and bring it inside. This process is known as endocytosis. In plants, the vacuole stores water and maintains the internal hydrostatic pressure of the cell. By providing the pressure within plant cells, vacuoles allow plants to support their leaves and flowers.

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    Who discovered vacuoles?

    A:

    Antonie van Leeuwenhoek of the Netherlands discovered the vacuole in 1676. Van Leeuwenhoek is referred to as the father of microbiology because he was the first scientist to study bacteria under a microscope. He made many additional important discoveries in microbiology and made improvements to microscopes.

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    What does a vacuole contain?

    A:

    A vacuole contains a fluid-filled sac that stores salts, water, minerals, nutrients, pigments and proteins within a membrane barrier called a tonoplast. Vacuoles can also contain waste products that make a plant taste bitter to animals.

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    What would happen if a cell didn't have a vacuole?

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    If a cell did not have a vacuole, it would be unable to carry out its usual functions and would eventually die. In plants, the vacuole plays an important role in water storage and the maintenance of structure. In animals, the vacuole is much smaller, but also performs essential functions related to protection of the cell, isolation of waste products and more. Vacuoles are also present in fungi and bacteria.

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    What is the function of a typical animal cell?

    A:

    Animal cells function in a variety of ways, depending on the type of cell they are, but common cells perform functions such as digestion, support and nerve transmission. There are a number of different types of cells in every animal, though most animals have similar types of cells. Cell function influences the shape, size and character of the cells in animal bodies.

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