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Explain the prokaryotic cell.
The word prokaryote is derived from the Greek word "pro" means before and "karyote" means the nucleus.
Thus, prokaryote means a primitive type of nucleus.
A prokaryote is a unicellular organism with a primitive type of nucleus. Prokaryotic cell lacks a membrane-bound nucleus, mitochondria, and any other membrane-bound organelle. Prokaryotes are further divided into, Archaea and Bacteria.
Components of prokaryotic cells
1. Plasma membrane: An outer covering that separates the cell’s inner environment from its surrounding environment.
2. Cytoplasm: It consists of the jelly-like cytosol present inside the cell, along with the cellular structures suspended in it.
3.DNA or RNA: It is the genetic material of the cell. The majority of prokaryotic DNA is found in the nucleoid and consists of a single large loop known as a circular chromosome.
4. Ribosomes: Single membrane structures that synthesize proteins.
5. Cell Wall: The majority of the bacteria are surrounded by a cell wall made of peptidoglycan (polymer-linked carbohydrates and small proteins). The function of the cell wall is to provide an extra layer of protection, maintain cell shape, and prevents dehydration. Few bacteria also possess a capsule that is sticky, an outermost layer of carbohydrates that helps the cell attach to surfaces in its environment.
6. Flagella: Whip-like structures that act as rotary motors to help bacteria move.
7. Fimbriae: Hair-like structures used for attachment to host cells and other surfaces.
8. Pili: Rod-like structures that allow a bacterium to transfer DNA to other bacteria, and sometimes they function in bacterial locomotion.
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