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Cells: Form Fits Function
Name ____________________________
1. Compare these 3 cells: A bacterial cell p. 487, an animal cell p. 186, and a plant cell p. 186
a. Which of these cells belongs to a prokaryote?
b. Which of these cells are eukaryotic?
c. Which of these cells is autotrophic?
i. Explain how their collection of cell organelles assists them in being autotrophic.
ii. There are parts of this organism that are made of cells that do not have these green
organelles involved in photosynthesis. What part do you think this might be? Explain
your reasoning.
d. What cell parts do all three cell types have (indicate 3 common parts)?
i. Think about the function of each of these parts, what does this indicate that all cells
need to be able to do?
e. Think about this characteristic of life: All living things need energy. The prokaryotic cell is a
single-celled organism; therefore it must be able to meet all of the characteristics of life as a
unit. Still, bacterial cells do not have mitochondria to efficiently convert energy into a usable
form. How can they live? Explain how bacteria can survive even though they lack
2. It is a widely accepted theory that mitochondria and chloroplasts were at one time free-living
prokaryotic organisms. These organisms were engulfed by a larger cell, and rather than being
digested, they became endosymbionts (mutualists).
a. Examine the structure of the mitochondria and compare it to a prokaryotic cell. List 3 points
of evidence that support this idea.
3. Eukaryotic cells are typically 100X bigger than prokaryotic cells.
a. Why are even the smallest eukaryotic cells much bigger than prokaryotic cells?
b. There is an upper limit to the size of a single cell. Explain why this is so.
c. Do you think there is a lower limit to the size of a cell? Explain your reasoning.
d. Some of the largest cells in the human body are skeletal muscle cells. They area few hundred
microns across and a few centimeters in length. These cells are multinucleate, containing
more than one nucleus. Given the shape of this cell, explain why having more than one
nucleus is necessary.
e. Given the function of skeletal muscle cells, what other organelle would be plentiful?
4. Look at the shape of the cell from the lining of the human intestines (p865 Campbell 6th edition). The
main job of this cell is to absorb nutrients from digested food. Describe the shape of these cells and
explain how its shape would help it to do its job.
5. Look at the shape of the plant root epidermis (p613). Its main job is to absorb water and minerals
from the soil. Describe the shape of these cells and explain how its shape would help it to do its job.
6. Groups of cells that perform a function together are called a tissue. In living things, tissues are
arranged in different ways in order to help them perform their functions. For example, tissue such as
is found within the lungs- simple (one layer) squamous (flat cells) tissue. The lung tissue is very thin,
this is necessary for gases to easily pass between the air sacs and the blood stream. For comparison,
look at the shape of human epidermal (skin) cells (p 894). This arrangement of cells is called
stratified (many layers) squamous tissue. The main job of the epidermis is protection. Explain how
the arrangement of these cells helps them to do their job.
7. The major job of pancreatic cells is making various proteins (pancreatic enzymes and hormones such
as insulin and glucagons). What organelle would be plentiful in pancreatic cells?
8. (Microsocope Set Up) Indicate whether the unknown cells presented in the microscopes are from
plant, animal, or bacterial cells. Explain your reasoning for each cell type.