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Specialised cells

Cells may be specialised for a particular function.
Their structure will allow them to carry this function out. Here are some examples:

Leaf Cell/ Palisade Cell

The function of a leaf is photosynthesis
to absorb light and carbon dioxide to produce carbohydrates

Adaption Purpose

Large surface area To…

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Root Hair Cell
Function
Absorbs water and mineral ions from the soil



Adaptations

Long 'fingerlike' cell
gives a large surface area.
helps absorption
thin cell wall
easier for minerals to pass across



Large permanent vacuole
affects the movement of water from
the soil across the root hair cell



Positioned close…

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a fat cell can end up 1000 times its original size as it fills up with fat






Cone cell from human eye
Function
in the light sensitive layer of eye (the retina)
help you see in colour



Adaptations

Visual pigment
the outer segment contains a chemical called visual pigment
changes…

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Adaptations

Protective jelly coating
which the sperm must burrow through in order to fertilise the ovum.



yolk
provides a large food store needed for a developing
young organism, once its fertilised



large and bulky
no active movement is needed it just sits and waits
for a sperm to find it…

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streamlined
easier to swim

Red blood cell
Function
contains haemoglobin to carry oxygen to the cells



Adaptations

thin outer membrane
to let oxygen diffuse through easily



biconcave shape
increase surface area
allows more oxygen to be absorbed efficiently
increases speed of movement of oxygen in and out of the cell…

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stomata open so gases can be exchanged for photosynthesis



Plant is short of water
guard cells lose water and become flaccid
stomata close to stop too much water evaporating



Sensitive to light
close at night to save water without wasting time for photosynthesis





Cilia cell
Function
protects the respiratory system…

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Function
to protect the body and kill pathogens



Adaptations

irregular shape
they can change shape to squeeze out of blood vessels and get to the site of infection



cytoplasm that can flow
makes it possible for the cell to change shape
surround bacteria
engulf bacteria



can increase in number
helps…

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hollow
allow water and minerals to pass through them with no resistance
strong and lignified
support the plant



can increase in number
helps them fight disease better
stomata close to stop too much water evaporating



Muscle cell
Function
They are cells found in muscles in animals, they contract and relax…

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