AS LEVEL- Biology- Basic components of living systems (Cytoskeleton)

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  • Basic components of living systems (Cytoskeleton)
    • Provides mechanical strength to cells, aiding transport within cells + enabling cell movement
    • Microfilaments
      • Made out of actin protein
      • Can contract + relax- changes length
      • Function is to change + move cell surface membrane
    • Microtubules
      • Made out of tubulin protein
      • They polymerise (add another one) + depolymerise (take one off) to change the length
      • Function is to form a scaffold to determine the shape of the cell
      • Acts as tracks for the movement of organelles around cells
      • Spindle fibres are involved in movement of chromosomes in cell division
    • Intermediate filaments
      • Rigid fibres that don't change length
      • Function is to give mechanical strength to cells
    • Centrioles- *Comprised of microtubules *Found in pairs that are perpendicular to each other *They are involved in the assembly + organisation of spindle fibres during cell division
    • Both flagella and cilia have a 9 + 2 arrangement of microtubules.


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