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What are the three main parts of a cell?

A:

Quick Answer

The three main parts of a cell are the plasma membrane, the region containing the DNA and the cytoplasm. However, not all cells have exactly the same basic parts. There is a difference between the structures of eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells.

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Full Answer

The plasma membrane separates the cell from its environment and regulates the substances that flow in and out of the cell. Additional structures, such as the flagella and cilia, may be found on the cell's external surface. All cells have DNA, but the region containing the DNA is called the "nucleus" in eukaryotic cells. Prokaryotic cells do not have a nucleus. The DNA is simply found in the cytoplasm or the semi-fluid substance within the cell. Other organelles may also be found within the cytoplasm, including ribosomes, endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi bodies, vacuoles and mitochondria.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are the four main functions of the plasma membrane?

    A:

    The four main functions of the plasma membrane include identification, communication, regulation of solute exchange through the membrane, and isolation of the cytoplasm from the external environment. The plasma membrane is a semi-permeable phospholipid bilayer that contains a hydrophilic head and a non-polar hydrophobic tail. It contains hydrogen bonds between the phospholipids that help hold the plasma membrane together; cholesterol molecules are also embedded into the membrane for fluidity.

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  • Q:

    What is an eukaryotic cell?

    A:

    Eukaryotic cells are advanced cells that have, at minimum, a cellular membrane surrounding cytoplasm, a cytoskeleton and membrane-covered organelles. More advanced eukaryotic cells also contain a nucleus that protects genetic material.

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    What is the structure of an Elodea cell?

    A:

    An Elodea cell consists of a semi-permeable cell wall, which contains a membrane, enveloping the cytoplasm, in which a nucleus, vacuole, chloroplasts and mitochondria are located. Some of these structures can be clearly seen under a compound microscope.

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  • Q:

    What is the basic structure of a human cell?

    A:

    The basic components of a human cell are the cell membrane, the cytoplasm, the nuclear membrane and the nucleus. Within each of these parts are smaller structures, such as the organelles, which have specialized functions within the cell.

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