The Ultimate Biology Test: Cell Biology Trivia

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, PhD, Biological Sciences
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All cells contain which of the following?

Answer: Plasma membrane
All cells contain the plasma membrane, which is a selectively permeable barrier that surrounds the cell and separates its internal environment from the external environment. The plasma membrane controls the movement of substances in and out of the cell, allowing nutrients to enter and waste products to exit. It also plays a role in cell signaling and communication. The other options listed, such as endoplasmic reticulum, nucleus, and mitochondria, are not present in all cells and have specific functions within certain cell types.

The control center or brain of the cell is the:

Answer: Nucleus
The nucleus is considered the control center or brain of the cell because it contains the cell's genetic material, DNA. DNA carries the instructions for the cell's activities, including growth, metabolism, and reproduction. The nucleus also regulates the cell's functions by controlling the synthesis of proteins and other molecules. Additionally, the nucleus plays a crucial role in cell division, as it directs the replication and distribution of DNA during mitosis and meiosis. Therefore, the nucleus is essential for maintaining the cell's overall structure and function.

What is attached to the ER to make it rough?

Answer: Ribosomes
The Rough ER, or rough endoplasmic reticulum, is a network of membranes in the cell that is studded with ribosomes. These ribosomes are responsible for protein synthesis. Therefore, the correct answer is ribosomes, as they are attached to the Rough ER.

The thin, flexible barrier around a cell is called the:

Answer: Plasma membrane
The thin, flexible barrier around a cell is called the plasma membrane. This membrane is composed of a phospholipid bilayer that separates the interior of the cell from its external environment. It regulates the movement of substances in and out of the cell, allowing for selective permeability. The plasma membrane also plays a crucial role in maintaining the cell's shape and providing support. Unlike the cell wall, which is rigid and found only in plant cells, the plasma membrane is flexible and present in all types of cells. The nuclear envelope, on the other hand, surrounds the nucleus, while the cytoplasm refers to the fluid-filled region inside the cell.

The main function of the cell wall is to:

Answer: Support and protect the cell
The cell wall is a rigid structure that surrounds the cell membrane in plant cells and some prokaryotic cells. Its main function is to provide support and protection to the cell, as it helps maintain the shape of the cell and prevents it from bursting under osmotic pressure. The cell wall also acts as a barrier against external factors, such as pathogens and physical damage, thus protecting the cell from harm.

Prokaryotes lack:

Answer: A nucleus
Prokaryotes lack a nucleus. Prokaryotic cells are characterized by the absence of a defined nucleus, which means that their genetic material is not enclosed within a membrane-bound nucleus. Instead, the DNA in prokaryotes is present in the cytoplasm, free-floating and not organized into chromosomes. This is in contrast to eukaryotic cells, which have a distinct nucleus that houses the genetic material. The absence of a nucleus in prokaryotes allows for a more streamlined and efficient structure, enabling these organisms to carry out essential functions in a simpler and more straightforward manner.

Diffusion is the movement of particles from:

Answer: An area of high concentration to an area of low concentration.
Diffusion is the process by which particles move from an area of high concentration to an area of low concentration. This occurs because particles tend to move randomly and will naturally spread out to areas where their concentration is lower. Therefore, the correct answer is an area of high concentration to an area of low concentration.

A Eukaryotic cell contains:

Answer: Membrane bound organelles
A eukaryotic cell contains membrane-bound organelles. This means that the cell has specialized compartments within its cytoplasm that are surrounded by membranes. These organelles, such as the nucleus, mitochondria, endoplasmic reticulum, and Golgi apparatus, perform specific functions necessary for the cell's survival and functioning. The presence of membrane-bound organelles is a characteristic feature of eukaryotic cells, distinguishing them from prokaryotic cells, which lack these structures.

Diffusion of water is:

Answer: Osmosis
Osmosis is the correct answer because it is the process by which water molecules move from an area of lower solute concentration to an area of higher solute concentration through a selectively permeable membrane. This movement of water occurs passively, without the need for energy expenditure, making it different from active transport and exocytosis. Facilitated diffusion, on the other hand, refers to the passive movement of molecules across a membrane with the help of transport proteins, but it does not specifically pertain to water molecules.

Which organelle is the "packing center" for the cell?

Answer: Golgi apparatus
The Golgi apparatus is known as the "packing center" for the cell because it is responsible for modifying, sorting, and packaging proteins and lipids into vesicles for transport to their final destinations within the cell or for secretion outside the cell. It receives newly synthesized proteins and lipids from the endoplasmic reticulum and processes them by adding specific modifications, such as carbohydrates, to form functional molecules. The Golgi apparatus then packages these molecules into vesicles, which can either be transported to other parts of the cell or released outside the cell.

_______  is a saclike structure that stores water. 

Answer: Vacuole
A vacuole is a saclike organelle found in plant and fungal cells. Its primary function is to store various substances, including water, nutrients, and waste products. In plant cells, the central vacuole helps maintain turgor pressure, contributing to cell structure and stability, as well as regulating osmotic balance.

Who discovered "cells" and named them?

Answer: Robert Hooke
Robert Hooke is credited with discovering "cells" and naming them. In 1665, he published his observations of cork under a microscope and described the small compartments he saw as "cells" due to their resemblance to the cells of a monastery. This discovery laid the foundation for the cell theory, which states that cells are the basic unit of life. Hooke's work was a significant contribution to the field of biology and has had a lasting impact on our understanding of living organisms.

Who proposed that some cell organelles were once a type of bacteria that were free-living?

Answer: Margulis
Margulis proposed the endosymbiotic theory, which suggests that some cell organelles, such as mitochondria and chloroplasts, were once free-living bacteria that were engulfed by other cells and formed a symbiotic relationship. This theory explains the similarities between these organelles and bacteria, such as their own DNA and ability to reproduce independently.

What is the small dark structure in the nucleus that produces ribosomes?

Answer: Nucleolus
The nucleolus is the small dark structure in the nucleus that produces ribosomes. It is responsible for the assembly of ribosomal subunits, which are essential for protein synthesis. The nucleolus contains specialized regions where ribosomal RNA (rRNA) is transcribed and processed, along with proteins that combine with rRNA to form ribosomes. These ribosomes are then exported to the cytoplasm, where they participate in protein synthesis.

This is the jelly-like substance found in all cells:

Answer: Cytoplasm
Cytoplasm is the jelly-like substance found in all cells. It is a semi-fluid substance that fills the cell and is enclosed by the cell membrane. It contains various organelles, such as the mitochondria and endoplasmic reticulum, as well as other components necessary for cellular processes. The cytoplasm provides support and shape to the cell, and it is where many metabolic reactions occur. It also serves as a medium for the movement of molecules and organelles within the cell.

These are the folds found inside the mitochondria that give more surface area for energy-releasing processes to take place:

Answer: Cristae
The folds found inside the mitochondria are called cristae. These cristae provide more surface area for energy-releasing processes to take place. This increased surface area allows for more efficient production of ATP, the main energy currency of the cell. The other options mentioned, such as chromosomes, cilia, and cytoskeleton, are not related to the folds inside the mitochondria.

Name a sac-like structure that contains digestive enzymes. It may digest waste materials or even dead cells.

Answer: Lysosome
A lysosome is a sac-like structure that contains digestive enzymes. These enzymes are responsible for breaking down waste materials and even dead cells. Lysosomes play a crucial role in the process of cellular digestion and waste removal. They are able to break down various substances, including proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates, through the action of their enzymes. This allows the cell to recycle nutrients and eliminate waste products effectively. Overall, lysosomes are essential for maintaining the cell's overall health and functionality.

This is a series of sac-like tunnels that have ribosomes attached. The main function of this or organelle is to make and process proteins.

Answer: Rough ER
The correct answer is rough ER. The rough ER is a network of sac-like tunnels that have ribosomes attached to their surface. This organelle is involved in protein synthesis and processing. The ribosomes on the rough ER synthesize proteins, which are then modified and processed within the sac-like tunnels. Therefore, the rough ER plays a crucial role in the production and processing of proteins in the cell.

This is considered to be the opposite of diffusion because it moves molecules from an area of low concentration to high concentration. The cell must use energy to make this happen.

Answer: Active transport
Active transport is the process in which molecules are moved from an area of low concentration to high concentration, which is opposite to diffusion. Unlike diffusion and osmosis, active transport requires the cell to use energy in order to transport molecules against their concentration gradient. This process is essential for maintaining proper concentrations of molecules inside and outside the cell, and it allows the cell to accumulate substances that are needed for various cellular processes. Facilitated diffusion, on the other hand, is a passive process that does not require energy and involves the movement of molecules across a membrane with the help of transport proteins.

What is the name of the active transport process where the plasma membrane forms a pouch to surround something and bring it into the cell:

Answer: Endocytosis
Endocytosis is the correct answer because it is the active transport process where the plasma membrane forms a pouch to surround something and bring it into the cell. This process allows the cell to take in large molecules or particles that cannot pass through the plasma membrane on their own. It can occur through three different mechanisms: phagocytosis, pinocytosis, and receptor-mediated endocytosis. In phagocytosis, solid particles are engulfed, while in pinocytosis, liquids and solutes are taken in. Receptor-mediated endocytosis involves the binding of specific molecules to receptors on the plasma membrane before they are internalized.
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