Animal Cell vs Plant Cell
Plant cell and animal cell are the structural unit of life of plants and animals respectively. However, there are both similarities as well as differences between cells of plants and animals. Let us see what these differences are.
Firstly, both animal and plant cells are eukaryotes which implies that they have cell nucleus containing chromosomes. Both have cell membranes surrounding the cell that controls the movement of substances in and out of the cell. Differences in these two types of cells arise because of functional differences.
One of the biggest differences between a plant and an animal cell is the presence of a cell wall made up of cellulose in plants. This allows plants to build up high pressure inside the cell without bursting. This cell wall is necessary in the case of plants as plant cells need heavy exchange of fluids through osmosis. Animal cells do not have this cell wall.
Another difference arises because of the use of photosynthesis, a process through which plants convert sunlight into food. For this purpose, plants have chloroplasts having its own DNA. This is absent in animal cells.
Plant cells have a large vacuole which is present in cells’ cytoplasm. This vacuole takes up all the space in a plant cell with cell membrane encircling them. This vacuole contains waste materials, water and nutrients that plant can use or secrete whenever necessary. On the other hand animal cells have small vacuoles in comparison to plant cells that have a large vacuole. Another notable difference is that plant cells are mostly regular in size whereas animal cells vary greatly in size and shape. In general, plant cells are larger in size than animal cells. As far as shape is concerned, plant cells are rectangular in shape whereas animal cells are circular in shape.
• Because of functional differences, there are great differences between plant and animal cells.
• Plant cells have a cell wall surrounding cell membrane, whereas animal cells only have a cell membrane.
• Plant cells have chloroplasts that help in photosynthesis. These are absent in animal cells.
• Animal cells have small vacuoles in comparison to plant cells that have a large vacuole.
• Plant cells are mostly regular in size and rectangular in shape whereas animal cells vary greatly in size and shape.
• Plant cells have a large fluid sac called vacuole while animal cells have many small vacuoles.
• Plant cells are larger and rectangular whereas animal cells are smaller and circular in shape.