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ancreatic cancer cells, SEM

Pancreatic cancer cells. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of pancreatic cancer cells. The cells are joined by a cytoplasmic bridge. The irregular shape of the cells, the cellular projections and blebs (nodules) are typical of cancer cells. Pancreatic cancer often causes no symptoms until it is well established and untreatable.

Science Photo Library - STEVE GSCHMEISSNER/ Brand X Pictures/ Getty Images
Definition: The cytoplasm consists of all of the contents outside of the nucleus and enclosed within the cell membrane of a cell. This includes the cytosol and in euckaryotic cells, organelles such as mitochondria and ribosomes. Also located within the cytoplasm is the cytoskeleton, a network of fibers that help the cell maintain its shape and give it support.

The cytoplasm is clear in color and has a gel-like appearance. It is composed mainly of water and also contains enzymes, salts, organelles, and various organic molecules. The cytoplasm helps to move materials around the cell and also dissolves cellular waste.

Related Terms: Cytosol, Cell Membrane, Cytoskeleton
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