Monday, December 27, 2021

When you look at the pictures of plant and animal cells, you can

see tiny dots on the ER and in the cytoplasm. These dots are ribosomes, but why are they

important to the cell?

plant animal cell ribosomes

Ribosomes are small protein factories found in cells. Ribosomes are found in plant, animal, and bacterial cells. The average eukaryotic cell has approximately 10 million ribosomes.

If you take a look at this picture of a ribosome you will notice a large subunit and a small subunit that contains both protein and RNA.


In both plant and animal cells, ribosomes are found floating in the cytoplasm and bound to rough er.

Free-floating ribosomes create proteins to be used within the cell while ribosomes attached to the ER create proteins that are either bound to the cell membrane or are used outside of the cell.

Ribosomes use a process called translation to create proteins. In basic terms here is what happens

First, mRNA that has been created at the nucleus leaves the nucleus and travels to the ribosome.

Next tRNA then travels to the mRNA and reads it in triplets called codons. The tRNA has an amino acid on one end. The tRNA reads the mRNA and strings the amino acids together in the correct order.

protein synthesis

Why is protein important? Protein is used for many functions in the

cell. Proteins are used as building blocks, for example, your skin, and tendons are made up of protein.

Some proteins help with digestion. Proteins help with muscle contraction and

carry oxygen around the body. These tiny organelles called ribosomes play a very important function

in helping organisms stay alive.


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