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Dear Readers, Welcome to the latest issue of Micro
The two basic groups of living beings are prokaryotes and eukaryotes, and they differ fundamentally in cell structure, organization, and complexity. These distinctions are critical for comprehending the diversity of life on Earth.
Here are the fundamental difference between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells:
Prokaryotic cell _ representative image
Prokaryotic cells have a straightforward structure and no identifiable nucleus. Instead, the genetic material (DNA) is contained in a nucleoid region. There is no membrane enclosing the DNA.
Prokaryotic cells are typically smaller, ranging in size from 0.5 to 5 micrometers (m).
Membrane-bound organelles such as mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi apparatus, and lysosomes are absent in prokaryotes.
They do have a cell membrane (plasma membrane), but it is not as complex as that of eukaryotic cells.
Prokaryotes primarily reproduce through binary fission, a type of asexual reproduction in which one cell divides into two genetically identical daughter cells.
Prokaryotes have a single circular chromosome as their genetic material. They may also contain plasmids, which are tiny bits of DNA.
Flagella, which are simpler in structure than eukaryotic flagella, are common in motile prokaryotes.
Numerous different metabolic processes, like as photosynthesis, respiration, and fermentation, are capable of being carried out by prokaryotes.
Eukaryotic Cell _ representative image
Eukaryotic cells have a well-defined nucleus that is surrounded by a nuclear membrane. The genetic material (DNA) is divided into several linear chromosomes.
In general, the diameter of eukaryotic cells ranges from 10 to 100 µm.
There are numerous membrane-bound organelles in eukaryotic cells that perform specific functions. Included among these are the nucleus, mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi apparatus, and lysosomes.
Involved in protein synthesis and processing, the endoplasmic reticulum and the Golgi apparatus comprise the complex membrane system of eukaryotes.
Eukaryotes reproduce via diverse mechanisms, including mitosis (asexual reproduction) and meiosis (sexual reproduction with gametes).
Eukaryotes have multiple linear chromosomes made of DNA and associated histone proteins.
Flagella and cilia of eukaryotic organisms are structurally more complex and are frequently involved in cell motility.
The diverse metabolic capabilities of eukaryotes include aerobic respiration, photosynthesis (in plant cells), and numerous forms of anaerobic metabolism.
Prokaryotic cells are typically smaller, have a simpler structure, and lack a genuine nucleus. Eukaryotic cells are more complex, contain organelles surrounded by a membrane, have a true nucleus, and are typically larger. These fundamental differences reflect the enormous diversity of life on Earth and are the basis for the distinctions between bacteria and archaea (prokaryotes) and all other life forms (eukaryotes).