Characteristics of the plant cell
The plant cell is characterized by being eukaryotic and autotrophic. In addition, it is the basic unit that constitutes all the tissues and organs of the beings of the plantae kingdom, including their specific functions, their nutrition and their reproduction.
Plant cells are characterized by having chloroplasts, cellular organelles that carry out photosynthesis, the process of transforming light energy into chemical energy, creating their own food.
The parts of plant cells are:
- Cell wall: rigid envelope that maintains the shape of the cell and prevents dehydration.
- Cellular or plasma membrane: envelope of the cell and separates it from the external environment. It is semi-permeable.
- Cytoplasm: space between the plasma membrane and the nuclear wall, where other cell structures are found.
- Chloroplasts: carry out photosynthesis, the process of transforming inorganic matter into organic matter.
- Cell nucleus: limited by a nuclear wall, it contains the nucleolus that produces ribosomes and the genetic material in the form of chromosomes.
The plant cell performs all the essential functions for life like all cells. Also, they obey the cell cycle of every eukaryotic cell (with cell nucleus) composed of Interphase and the mitotic phase. In this last phase, asexual (mitosis) or sexual (meiosis) cell division occurs.
Animal and plant cell
The plant cell and the animal cell are both eukaryotic cells therefore both have a cell nucleus, ribosomes larger than that of prokaryotic cells and more complex genetic material.
The plant cell differs from the animal cell by having a larger vacuole, a cell wall that makes it more rigid and square, and chloroplasts, organelles that help photosynthesis, transforming light energy and carbon dioxide into food and oxygen. In this way, plant cells are characterized by having an autotrophic nutrition.
In addition, the vast majority have chlorophyll that gives plants and algae their characteristic green color.