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IB Biology 2013

Cell theory notes

2.1 Cell theory (SL)

2.1.1 Outline the cell theory (2)

1. All living organisms are made of cells
2. Cells are the smallest units of life
3. All cells come from other pre-existing cells

2.1.2 Discuss the evidence for the cell theory (3)

Robert Hooke (1662) devised a compound microscope and used it to observe the structure
of cork. First to use the term cells
Anthony van Leeuwenhoek (1680) made high focus lenses so magnifications of x240 were
achieved. Observed blood cells, sperms, protozoa and even bacteria.
Robert Brown (1831) observed and named the nucleus.
Theodor Schwann (1839) established cells as the natural unit of living things
Rudolf Virchow (1856) established that cells only arise by division of other cells
Louis Pasteur established that life does not spontaneously generate.

2.1.3 State that unicellular organisms carry out all the functions of life (1)

Unicellular organisms carry out all the functions of life
Movement, Respiration, Sensing, Homeostatis, Growth, Reproduction, Excretion, Nutrients

2.1.4 Compare the relative sizes of molecules, cell membrane thickness, viruses, bacteria,
organelles and cells (3)

Molecules 1nm
thickness of membranes 10nm
viruses 100nm, bacteria 1m
organelles up to 10 m
Most cells up to 100 m

2.1.5 Calculate the linear magnification of drawings and the actual size of specimens in images of
known magnification (2)

Magnification = size of image/size of specimen

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2.1.6 Explain the importance of the surface area to volume ratio as a factor limiting cell size (3)
Importance of surface area to volume ratio:

Heat production/waste production/resource consumption is function of volume
Rate of exchange of materials and energy is function of surface area
Volume increases faster than surface area
Increase of size means decrease in SA:V ratio
The smaller the cell is, the more quickly and easily materials can be exchanged between
cytoplasm and environment
When maximum size is reached, cell growth stops.

2.1.7 State that multicellular organisms show emergent properties (1)

Multi-cellular organisms show emergent properties, arising from the interaction of
component parts the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

2.1.8 Explain that cells in multicellular organisms differentiate to carry out specialized functions
by expression some of their genes but not others (3)

Cells in multicellular organisms can differentiate to carry out specialized functions by
expressing some genes but not others
Genes that are expressed with determine function and characteristics of cell;

Totipotent: Can divide into all other cells
Pluripotent: Can divide into any other cell except for embryonic membrane cells
Multipotent: Can divide into many other cells
Unipotent: Can only divide into one kind of cell
Nullipotent: Cannot divide (e.g. blood cells)

2.1.9 State that stem cells retain the capacity to divide and have the ability to differentiate along
different pathways (1)

Stem cells retain the capacity to divide
Stem cells are derived from blastocysts/human embryos/left over from IVF/placenta and
umbilical cord/some adult tissues

2.1.10 Outline one therapeutic use of stem cells (2)
Technologies rely on replacing diseased/dysfunctional cells with healthy/functioning ones
Need to identify desired type of stem cell and grow in culture/special controlled conditions
Develop means of implanting/integrating cells into a patients own tissues so they function
with the bodys natural cells
Danger of rejection of cells therefore need to suppress immune system
Must make sure new cells do not become overgrown/develop into cancerous tissues

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Retinal cells replace dead cells in retina to cure presently incurable diseases such as
glaucoma and macular degeneration
Graft new skin cells to treat serious burn victims
Help repair catastrophic spinal injuries/help victims of paralysis regain movement by
replacing nerve tissue
In 2005, stem cells were used to restore insulation tissue of neurons in lab rats
Resulted in subsequent improvements in their mobility

2.2 Prokaryotic cells
2.2.1 Draw and label a diagram of the ultra-structure of Escherichia coli (E. coli) as an example of
a prokaryote (1)

2.2.2 Annotate the diagram from 2.2.1 with the functions of each named structure (2)
Structure Function
Cell wall A rigid outer layer made of peptidoglycan that
maintains shape and protects the cell from
damage or bursting if internal pressure is high
Cell membrane Semi-permeable barrier that controls the entry
and exit of substances
Cytoplasm Fluid component which contains the enzymes
needed for all metabolic reactions
Nucleoid Region of the cytoplasm which contains the
genophore (the prokaryotic DNA)
Plasmid Additional DNA molecule that can exist and
replicate independently of the genophore - it can
be transmitted between bacterial species

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Ribosome Complexes of RNA and protein that are
responsible for polypeptide synthesis
(prokaryotic ribosomes are smaller than
eukaryotes - 70S)
Flagella Long, slender projection containing a motor
protein which spins the flagella like a propellor,
enabling movement
Pili Hair-like extensions found on bacteria which can
serve one of two roles

2.2.3 Identify structures from 2.2.1 in electron micrographs of E. coli (2)

2.2.4 State that prokaryotic cells divide by binary fission (1)
Prokaryotic cells divide by binary fission
A form of asexual reproduction; not the same as mitosis
Circular DNA is copied in response to a replication signal
Two DNA loops attach to membrane, then membrane elongates and pinches off, forming 2
separate cells

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2.3 Eukaryotic cells
2.3.1 Draw and label a diagram of the ultra-structure of a liver cell as an example of an animal
cell (1)

2.3.2 Annotate the diagram from 2.3.1 with the functions of each named structure (2)
Structure Function
Ribosomes Complexes of RNA and protein that are
responsible for polypeptide synthesis (80S)
Rough ER Has ribosomes on surface, used in membrane
production, helps to synthesize proteins and
transport of proteins destined for secretion
Cell membrane Semi-permeable barrier that controls the entry
and exit of substances
Contains glycoproteins (immune system),
imbedded and integrated proteins; phospholipid
bilayer with hydrophobic tails.
Cytosol Fluid portion of cytoplasm (no organelles)
Nucleus Contains DNA; control centre of cell (for
transcription and DNA replication)
Nucleolus Site of production and assembly of ribosome
Mitochondria Site of aerobic respiration; produces ATP from
organic compounds
Golgi Apparatus Assembly of vesicles and folded membranes
involved in the sorting, storing and modification
of secretory products
Lysosome Site of hydrolysis/digestion/breakdown of
macromolecules (digestive sacs)
Peroxisome: Catalyses breakdown of toxic substances
Centrioles Microtubule organizing centres involved in
mitosis/meiosis and cytokinesis
Smooth ER Involved in synthesis and transport of lipids and
steroids; metabolism of carbohydrates

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2.3.3 Identify structures from 2.3.1 in electron micrographs of liver cells (2)

2.3.4 Compare prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells (3)

Both have cell membrane
Both contain ribosomes
Both have DNA and cytoplasm

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2.3.5 State three differences between plant and animal cells (1)

2.3.6 Outline two roles of extracellular components (2)
Plants: Cell wall made from cellulose (-pleated sheets) secreted from the cell
Provides support and mechanical strength for the cell (maintains cell shape)
Prevents excessive water uptake by maintaining a stable, turgid state
Serves as a barrier against infection by pathogens

Animals: Extracellular matrix (ECM) is made from secreted glycoproteins
Provides support and anchorage for cells
Segregates tissues from one another
Regulates intercellular communication by intercepting growth factors

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2.4 Membranes
2.4.1 Draw and label a diagram to show the structure of membranes (1)

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2.4.2 Explain how the hydrophobic and hydrophilic properties of phospholipids help to maintain
the structure of cell membranes (3)
Structure of Phospholipids
Consist of a polar head (hydrophilic) made from glycerol and phosphate
Consist of two non-polar fatty acid tails (hydrophobic)

Arrangement in Membrane
Phospholipids spontaneously arrange in a bilayer
Hydrophobic tail regions face inwards and are shielded from the surrounding polar fluid
while the two hydrophilic head regions associate with the cytosolic and extracellular
environments respectively

Structural Properties of Phospholipid Bilayer
Phospholipids are held together in a bilayer by hydrophobic interactions (weak associations)
Hydrophilic / hydrophobic layers restrict entry and exit of substances
Phospholipids allow for membrane fluidity / flexibility (important for functionality)
Phospholipids with short or unsaturated fatty acids are more fluid
Phospholipids can move horizontally or occasionally laterally to increase fluidity
Fluidity allows for the breaking / remaking of membranes (exocytosis / endocytosis)
Stability can be increased by the presence of cholesterol molecules

2.4.3 List the functions of membrane proteins (1)

Transport: Protein channels (facilitated) and protein pumps (active)
Receptors: Peptide-based hormones (insulin, glucagon, etc.)
Anchorage: Cytoskeleton attachments and extracellular matrix
Cell recognition: MHC proteins and antigens
Intercellular joinings: Tight junctions and plasmodesmata
Enzymatic activity: Metabolic pathways (e.g. electron transport chain)

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2.4.4 Define diffusion and osmosis (1)
Diffusion: The passive movement of particles from a region of high concentration to a region of low
Osmosis: The passive movement of water molecules, across a partially permeable membrane, from
a region of lower solute concentration to a region of higher solute concentration.

2.4.5 Explain passive transport across membranes by simple diffusion and facilitated diffusion (3)
The plasma membrane is semi-permeable and selective in what can cross
Substances that move along the concentration gradient (high to low) undergo passive
transport and do not require the expenditure of energy (ATP)

Simple diffusion:
Small, non-polar (lipophilic) molecules can freely diffuse across the membrane

Facilitated diffusion:
Larger, polar substances (ions, macromolecules) cannot freely diffuse and require the
assistance of transport proteins (carrier proteins and channel proteins) to facilitate their
movement (facilitated diffusion)

2.4.6 Explain the role of protein pumps and ATP in active transport across membranes (3)
The passive movement implies that there is no expenditure of energy in moving the molecules from
one side of the membrane to the other:
However the molecules themselves possess kinetic energy which accounts for why they are in
The membrane therefore 'allows' the molecules to pass through without needing to add any
additional energy to the kinetic energy already possessed by the particles.
Particles will in fact pass in both directions but overall the emerging pattern is that molecules move
from a region of their high concentration to a region of their low concentration.
Some molecules are so small that they pass through the membrane with little resistance
This includes Oxygen and Carbon Dioxide
Lipid molecules (even though very large) pass through membranes with very little resistance

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Larger molecules (red) move passively through the
membrane via channel proteins
These proteins(grey) have large globular structures and
complex 3d-shapes
The shapes provide a channel through the middle of the
protein, the 'pore'
The channel 'shields' the diffusing molecule from the non-
charged/ hydrophobic/ non-polar regions of the membrane.

2.4.7 Explain how vesicles are used to transport materials within a cell between the rough ER,
Golgi apparatus and plasma membrane (3)

2.4.8 Describe how the fluidity of the membrane allows it to change shape, break and re-form
during endocytosis and exocytosis (2)

2.5 Cell division
2.5.1 Outline the stages in the cell cycle, including interphase (G
, S, G
), mitosis and cytokinesis
Longest part of the cell cycle
Chromosomes cease to be visible as thread-like structures at interphase, becoming
dispersed as chromatin.
Become actively involved in protein synthesis
Synthesis of new organelles takes place in the cytoplasm
Each chromosome replicates forms chromatids
Cell division chromosomes, present as chromatids, separated and distributed into two
daughter nuclei
Mitosis is a continuous process with no breaks between the phases.

Division of the cytoplasm
Following telophase, cell organelles become distributed between cells and plasma
membrane tucks in, pinching the cytoplasm in half to form two new, identical cells

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2.5.2 State that tumours (cancers) are the result of uncontrolled cell division and that they can
occur in an organ or tissue (1)
Tumour cells (cancers) are the result of uncontrolled cell division and can occur in organs
or tissues

2.5.3 State that interphase is an active period in the life of a cell when many metabolic reactions
occur, including protein synthesis, DNA replication and an increase in the number of mitochondria
and/or chloroplasts (1)
Interphase in an active period in the life of a cell when many metabolic reactions occur
- Protein synthesis
- DNA replication
- increase in no. of mitochondria and/or chloroplasts

2.5.4 Describe the events that occur in the four phases of mitosis (prophase, metaphase,
anaphase and telophase) (2)
Prophase: chromosomes supercoil; nucleolus disappears and membrane breaks down

Metaphase: centrioles move to opposite sides of the cell; microtubules attach to the
centromeres and arrange them at equator

Anaphase: spindles shorten, chromatids pulled to opposite poles to form chromosomes

Telophase: nuclear membrane reforms, chromosomes uncoil

2.5.5 Explain how mitosis produces two genetically identical nuclei (3)
Daughter cells produced by mitosis have identical sets of chromosomes to each other
and to the parent cell
Exact copy of each chromosome is made via replication
Chromatids remain attached by centromeres during mitosis,
Centromeres divide during anaphase and chromatids of each pair are pulled apart to
opposite poles; thus, one copy of each chromosome moves to each pole
Two cells are formed via division of the cytoplasm at the exact midpoint

2.5.6 State that growth, embryonic development, tissue repair and asexual reproduction involve
mitosis (1)
Growth in, embryonic development, tissue repair and asexual reproduction involve