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Largest Organelle In The Cell

  1. Apr 27, 2016 #1
    It is said that nucleus is the largest organelle in the cell. (Well, it doesn't really specify.) So, I'm actually wondering about the vacuole. Isnt it drawn the largest in plant cell? I did manage to find some information from internet but Im not really satisfied. :3
    No offence, just say what you think is right. I want to learn more. Thanks in advance~
     
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  3. Apr 27, 2016 #2

    Ygggdrasil

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    Which organelle is the largest probably depends on the type of cell being studied. For example, red blood cells do not contain a nucleus, so obviously the nucleus would not be the largest organelle for those cells. In the case of a typical hepatocyte (liver cell), the endoplasmic reticulum may take up more volume (~16% of the cell volume) than the nucleus (~6% of the cell volume): http://book.bionumbers.org/how-big-is-the-endoplasmic-reticulum-of-cells/
     
  4. Apr 28, 2016 #3
    Ehh, arent they just found abundantly, not the largest? Do correct me.
     
  5. Apr 28, 2016 #4

    Ygggdrasil

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    The ER is a single continuous structure.
     
  6. Apr 28, 2016 #5

    jim mcnamara

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    There many kinds of cells, sometimes asking for the 'largest' organelle does not make a lot of sense. Why? Because of the diversity of cells, especially in plants:
    The largest relative volume of a single organelle (what @Ygggdrasil answered ) is a way to provide a kind of answer. This varies across tissues in animals and plants as well.
    Most times the answer is: Usually the largest single organelle in a cell is the nucleus. In both plant and animals.
    If this if for HS biology, then go with what you have in the post above, but be aware of the weirdness in the world of cells.

    Really there is no one perfect answer, you always find something goofy:
    Multinucleate cells - one cell, many nuclei, relative volume of nuclear material is high. Does this count?
    Fungal hyphae (Basidiomyces) - kind of like the root body of some fungi like mushrooms - are mutlinucleate, but also have huge amounts of ER.
    Acetabularia is a GIGANTIC single cell (3 inches high sometimes), so the is the ER the largest? (These things are just plain wonderful).
    2000px-Acetabularia_mediterranea_life.svg.png
     
  7. Apr 28, 2016 #6

    Ygggdrasil

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    Last edited: Apr 28, 2016
  8. Apr 28, 2016 #7

    jim mcnamara

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