What is Animal Cell?

Meaning of Animal Cell

Eukaryotic cells can be considered when referring to a similar structural and functional aspect, that is, there are several members of the internal composition that is very similar when comparing one cell with another.

Furthermore, the mechanisms responsible for the production of various molecules, such as proteins, DNA, among others, are basically the same. However, there are crucial differences between the existing groups.

When you think of an animal cell, you tend to think of it as a specific type of cell. This is an impulse that can lead to error. You see, in humans there are hepatocytes, osteocytes, adipocytes, epithelial cells, among many others.

So when we take into account all the living organisms that are made up of this cell group, that number of cell types goes up a lot. Therefore, it is correct to say that an animal cell is a general classification of a group to differentiate it from another, that of plant cells.

Animal cells are all those that make up the living beings of all the phyla of the great kingdom Animalia.

This group consists of eukaryotic cells, composed of plasma membrane, cytoplasm, and true nucleus separated from the rest by the library. Immersed in the cytoplasm are various membranous and non-membranous organelles, such as mitochondria, Golgi complex, lysosomes, centrioles, etc.

Although both are eukaryotic cells, as mentioned above, there are some differences between animal cell and plant cell.

As for the outer region of the plasma membrane, there is no cell wall in animal cells, as in plants.

What is often found in this zone is the glycocalyx.

This structure is an envelope externally associated with the plasma membrane that gives it some resistance without making the structure rigid. In addition, the glycocalyx provides the ability to recognize cells, block agents from the external environment, and retain molecules of importance to the cell, such as nutrients.

Regarding the internal part of the plasmatic membrane, it is possible to mention other points that differentiate the groups. In plant beings there are pigmented plastids responsible for photosynthesis called chloroplasts.

Unlike these, animal cells do not have plastids or plastids.

This is quite reasonable since the animals are heterotrophs and not autotrophs. Another internal difference resides in the cytoplasmic vacuoles. Both groups have this structure, however in animal cells they are much smaller than those of plants.

In addition to the above, other deviations in the configuration can be mentioned.

Cells, in general, have the ability to maintain a reserve of energy in the form of some complex sugar. In the case of animals, this polysaccharide is glycogen, while in plants the form it presents is starch.

Also in the sense that there are two different structures to perform the same function, in both groups there is the transit of molecules through some type of connection between the juxtaposed cells.

In animal cells these structures are called gap junctions and in plant plasmodesmata.

Finally, the classification of cells in animals and plants is a way of differentiating between two large groups. This is done so that cells are grouped according to their characteristics to make it easier to understand and study organisms.

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