You are here


16 November, 2015 - 14:12
active transport the method of transporting material that requires energy
cell wall a rigid cell covering made of cellulose in plants, peptidoglycan in bacteria, nonpeptidoglycan compounds in Archaea, and chitin in fungi that protects the cell, provides structural support, and gives shape to the cell
central vacuole a large plant cell organelle that acts as a storage compartment, water reservoir, and site of macromolecule degradation
chloroplast a plant cell organelle that carries out photosynthesis
cilium (plural: cilia) a short, hair-like structure that extends from the plasma membrane in large numbers and is used to move an entire cell or move substances along the outer surface of the cell
concentration gradient an area of high concentration across from an area of low concentration
cytoplasm the entire region between the plasma membrane and the nuclear envelope, consisting of organelles suspended in the gel-like cytosol, the cytoskeleton, and various chemicals
cytoskeleton the network of protein fibers that collectively maintains the shape of the cell, secures some organelles in specific positions, allows cytoplasm and vesicles to move within the cell, and enables unicellular organisms to move
cytosol the gel-like material of the cytoplasm in which cell structures are suspended
desmosome a linkage between adjacent epithelial cells that forms when cadherins in the plasma membrane attach to intermediate filaments
diffusion a passive process of transport of low-molecular weight material down its concentration gradient
electrochemical gradient a gradient produced by the combined forces of the electrical gradient and the chemical gradient
endocytosis a type of active transport that moves substances, including fluids and particles, into a cell
endomembrane system the group of organelles and membranes in eukaryotic cells that work together to modify, package, and transport lipids and proteins
endoplasmic reticulum (ER) a series of interconnected membranous structures within eukaryotic cells that collectively modify proteins and synthesize lipids
eukaryotic cell a cell that has a membrane-bound nucleus and several other membrane-bound compartments or sacs
exocytosis a process of passing material out of a cell
extracellular matrix the material, primarily collagen, glycoproteins, and proteoglycans, secreted from animal cells that holds cells together as a tissue, allows cells to communicate with each other, and provides mechanical protection and anchoring for cells in the tissue
facilitated transport a process by which material moves down a concentration gradient (from high to low concentration) using integral membrane proteins
flagellum (plural: flagella) the long, hair-like structure that extends from the plasma membrane and is used to move the cell
fluid mosaic model a model of the structure of the plasma membrane as a mosaic of components, including phospholipids, cholesterol, proteins, and glycolipids, resulting in a fluid rather than static character
Golgi apparatus a eukaryotic organelle made up of a series of stacked membranes that sorts, tags, and packages lipids and proteins for distribution
gap junction a channel between two adjacent animal cells that allows ions, nutrients, and other lowmolecular weight substances to pass between the cells, enabling the cells to communicate
hypertonic describes a solution in which extracellular fluid has higher osmolarity than the fluid inside the cell
hypotonic describes a solution in which extracellular fluid has lower osmolarity than the fluid inside the cell
isotonic describes a solution in which the extracellular fluid has the same osmolarity as the fluid inside the cell
lysosome an organelle in an animal cell that functions as the cell’s digestive component; it breaks down proteins, polysaccharides, lipids, nucleic acids, and even worn-out organelles
microscope the instrument that magnifies an object
mitochondria (singular: mitochondrion) the cellular organelles responsible for carrying out cellular respiration, resulting in the production of ATP, the cell’s main energy-carrying molecule
nuclear envelope the double-membrane structure that constitutes the outermost portion of the nucleus
nucleolus the darkly staining body within the nucleus that is responsible for assembling ribosomal subunits
nucleus the cell organelle that houses the cell’s DNA and directs the synthesis of ribosomes and proteins
organelle a membrane-bound compartment or sac within a cell
osmolarity the total amount of substances dissolved in a specific amount of solution
osmosis the transport of water through a semipermeable membrane from an area of high water concentration to an area of low water concentration across a membrane
passive transport a method of transporting material that does not require energy
peroxisome a small, round organelle that contains hydrogen peroxide, oxidizes fatty acids and amino acids, and detoxifies many poisons
phagocytosis a process that takes macromolecules that the cell needs from the extracellular fluid; a variation of endocytosis
pinocytosis a process that takes solutes that the cell needs from the extracellular fluid; a variation of endocytosis
plasma membrane a phospholipid bilayer with embedded (integral) or attached (peripheral) proteins that separates the internal contents of the cell from its surrounding environment
plasmodesma (plural: plasmodesmata) a channel that passes between the cell walls of adjacent plant cells, connects their cytoplasm, and allows materials to be transported from cell to cell
prokaryotic cell a unicellular organism that lacks a nucleus or any other membrane-bound organelle
receptor-mediated endocytosis a variant of endocytosis that involves the use of specific binding proteins in the plasma membrane for specific molecules or particles
ribosome a cellular organelle that carries out protein synthesis
rough endoplasmic reticulum (RER) the region of the endoplasmic reticulum that is studded with ribosomes and engages in protein modification
selectively permeable the characteristic of a membrane that allows some substances through but not others
smooth endoplasmic reticulum (SER) the region of the endoplasmic reticulum that has few or no ribosomes on its cytoplasmic surface and synthesizes carbohydrates, lipids, and steroid hormones; detoxifies chemicals like pesticides, preservatives, medications, and environmental pollutants, and stores calcium ions
solute a substance dissolved in another to form a solution
tight junction a firm seal between two adjacent animal cells created by protein adherence
tonicity the amount of solute in a solution.
unified cell theory the biological concept that states that all organisms are composed of one or more cells, the cell is the basic unit of life, and new cells arise from existing cells
vacuole a membrane-bound sac, somewhat larger than a vesicle, that functions in cellular storage and transport
vesicle a small, membrane-bound sac that functions in cellular storage and transport; its membrane is capable of fusing with the plasma membrane and the membranes of the endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi apparatus