Cells are any life's primary unit. Thus it's important to learn and differentiate between the two major cell types- prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. But, knowing them isn't enough. Do you have concepts strong enough to tell the difference between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cell? You don't? Then by the end of this article, you'll have a good understanding of both- their similarities and differences!
What is Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic Cell?
Before getting excited about- the difference between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cell, it's important to understand them. Not together but individually. The forthcoming section does that for you. So keep reading and learn about prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells.
The simplest types of cells are- prokaryotic cells. They are found in organisms like archaebacteria and bacteria. A characteristic that makes them stand out is- the lack of membrane-bound organelles and nuclei. Also if they have a genetic material that’s circular and different from DNA. Organisms that come under prokaryotes are crucial for completing processes like- decomposition and nutrient cycling.
In comparison to prokaryotic cells, eukaryotic cells are much more complex. The eukaryotic cells are found in a range of organisms like- plants, animals, fungi, and protists. They differ from prokaryotes by having membrane-bound organelles like- the Golgi apparatus, mitochondria, etc. Eukaryotes exhibit cellular specialisation that’s greater than prokaryotes and are capable of multicellularity.
Difference between Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic Cell
The two cells- prokaryotic and eukaryotic, form the basis of an organism’s life. This makes it very important to understand the difference between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cell. These differences are discussed in the table below:
Exceptions/Variations: Characteristics of Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic cell
Biology is a science. What's definite about science? It's never definite. This is why there are exceptions, challenging the difference between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cell. Some of them are discussed below:
Genetic Material: Some eukaryotes, like certain species of yeast, may have circular mitochondrial DNA in addition to linear nuclear DNA.
Introns: Some prokaryotes, such as some archaea, may contain introns.
Mitochondria: In some prokaryotes, like Rickettsia (a bacteria) mitochondria appear to be present. One can say they are structures quite similar to mitochondria.
Cell Wall: Some eukaryotes, such as animal cells, lack a cell wall.
Flagella: Algae and protozoa are some eukaryotes with flagella present. They are almost identical to prokaryotic flagella. Alongside this, they also share- function and structure.
Similar Characteristics of Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic Cell
Yes, there is a difference between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cell. But, if one tries to explain prokaryotic and eukaryotic cell- fundamental similarities come to the front. What are they? Learn some of these key similarities in the below write-up:
1. Plasma Membrane: A plasma membrane is present in both prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. It solely shields the cells from the outside environment. Alongside this, any substance movement in or out of the cells is also regulated by this membrane.
2. Genetic Material: It is another feature that both eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells exhibit. Although the genetic material is present in different structures and at different places, it is indeed present.
3. Ribosomes: For protein synthesis, both prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells use- ribosomes. Although varying in size and structure, it serves the same purpose in both.
4. Cytoplasm: A gel-like substance namely cytoplasm is shared between both the cells- prokaryotic and eukaryotic. It acts as a medium for cell processes and homes cell organelles in eukaryotes.
To wrap it all up, cells are of two categories- eukaryotic cells and prokaryotic cells. Don't worry, you can easily differentiate between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells. How? Go through the table given in the article above. There are more sections to this article like exceptions and similarities in the cells and their differences.
Upon reading the entire article, all your doubts about the differences between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cell, will be cleared!