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What is the function of rhizoids?

A:

Quick Answer

Found in fungi and certain species of sponges and plants, rhizoids are small filaments that function in a manner that is similar to that of the roots of vascular land plants. The primary duty of rhizoids is to help organisms absorb nutrients, minerals and water.

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Full Answer

Rhizoids and roots are both necessary for many organisms to sustain life, but the two differ in the way they form and function. Rhizoids are generated from a single cell, while roots are the result of multiple cells with a common purpose combining together. Rhizoids absorb water between threads in a process called capillary action, while roots absorb water through their own cell wall in a process called osmosis.

In fungi, rhizoids are located in the thallus, which is the body of cells that make up the organism. The thallus is a structure in the plant kingdom that lacks specialized components such as leaves or a stem. In several species, the rhizoid serves an additional purpose beyond nutrient absorption by anchoring the thallus to the substratum. In biology, the substratum is the object on which a organism exists. For example, the substratum for a specimen of moss growing on a tree trunk would be the tree trunk.

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