One common analogy for the mitochondria (singular mitochondrion) is a powerhouse, as mitochondria create energy for the cell. Mitochondria are sometimes called the furnace of the cell as well. Like a powerhouse or furnace, mitochondria take in basic fuel stuff and generate energy from it: a furnace generates heat energy, and a powerhouse generates electricity, whereas mitochondria generate ATP.Continue Reading
ATP is a chemical that is found throughout all the domains of life, from dandelions to amoebas to tuna fish, mushrooms and people. Food is made (as in plants) or eaten (as in animals) and ultimately broken down into ATP to create chemical energy for being alive. The process of creating ATP from food is called the citric acid cycle.
Mitochondria take in nutrients floating in the cytoplasm and break them down within their inner membranes using enzymes specialized for the task. Among the chemicals involved is the familiar citric acid, found in fruits such as oranges and lemons, but here involved in the splitting of molecules for energy generation. Once the ATP is made, it is removed from the relatively impermeable inner membrane by a chemical called ATP translocase.
There are multiple mitochondria within a single cell, and all of them work to generate the vital ATP. Cells that are more active contain more ATP, carrying their powerhouses within them for swift and efficient production of the energy they need.Learn more about Molecular Biology & DNA
Good cell analogy project ideas include comparing the cell to a city, a school, the government or any other organization with a border, an energy producer, a center, a pattern of development, pathways and storage facilities. The organization needs enough components to match directly with the cell components.Full Answer >
Cells that have no mitochondria are unable to convert oxygen into energy, found in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). All multicellular eukaryotic organisms, including plants and animals, have mitochondria in some cells, but prokaryotes and some single-cell eukaryotes do not have mitochondria.Full Answer >
Because they are the energy-producing organelles in plant and animal cells, a high number of mitochondria implies that the cell requires a great deal of energy to perform its specific function. Skeletal muscle cells, for example, have a large number of mitochondria because they are required to respond quickly when they are needed to do mechanical work. Fat cells also contain many mitochondria because their function is to store energy for when it is required by the body.Full Answer >
Chromosomes can be thought of as analogous to different colored pairs of socks. Each sock represents a single chromatid, a pair of socks represents sister chromatids and different colored socks represent other chromosomes.Full Answer >