MCAT Content / Classification And Structure Of Prokaryotic Cells / Lack Of Typical Eukaryotic Organelles

Lack of typical eukaryotic organelles

Topic: Classification And Structure Of Prokaryotic Cells

Prokaryote cells lack the typical eukaryote organelles such as Golgi apparatus, endoplasmic reticulum, mitochondria, and chloroplasts.

Although all prokaryote and eukaryote cells have cytoplasm (or cytosol) that contains several membrane-bound bodies. Prokaryotic cells lack organelles such as Golgi apparatus, endoplasmic reticulum, mitochondria, and chloroplasts that eukaryotic cells possess. Prokaryotic cells contain only a single compartment enclosed within a cell membrane.

In addition to the lack of organelles, prokaryotic cells also lack a cytoskeleton which is involved in intracellular organelle transport.


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Key Points

• Prokaryotic cells lack internal cellular bodies (organelles) such as Golgi apparatus, endoplasmic reticulum, mitochondria, and chloroplasts that eukaryotic cells possess. 

• In prokaryotic cells, there is no cytoskeleton to move intracellular organelles because, in the first place, there are no organelles to be transported.


Key Terms

organelles: a tiny cellular structure that performs specific functions within a cell

endoplasmic reticulum: a continuous membrane system that forms a series of flattened sacs within the cytoplasm of eukaryotic cells

golgi apparatus: a complex of vesicles and folded membranes within the cytoplasm of most eukaryotic cells

mitochondria: an organelle found in large numbers in most cells, in which the biochemical processes of respiration and energy production occur

chloroplasts: are organelles found in plant cells and eukaryotic algae that conduct photosynthesis

cytoskeleton: a structure that helps cells maintain their shape and internal organization

prokaryote: an organism whose cell (or cells) are characterized by the absence of a nucleus or any other membrane-bound organelles

eukaryote: an organism with genetic material within a distinct nucleus

intracellular: located or occurring within a cell or cells.



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