• Different types of cells carry out specific functions and when all cells combine their functions, they can share out the processes of life.
  • Each cell is dependent on the other and all of them function collaboratively to support the diverse processes in an organism
  • When cells are specialised they carry particular job and develop a distinct shape. The changes in shape enable the cell to carry out its special function.


1. Red blood cell (erythrocytes)

  • Its function is to transport oxygen from lungs to body tissues and carbon dioxide from body tissue to the lungs.
  • Lacks a nucleus to increases surface area for absorption of oxygen.
  • Their bi-concave shape and flexibility allow them to pass along small capillaries.
  • Contains haemoglobin (red pigment) which carries oxygen needed for cell respiration to produce energy.


2. Muscle cell

  • It is responsible for contraction when stimulated by a nerve so that movement occurs.
  • They are long and thin and have the ability to change their shape when they contract.
  • Have large numbers of mitochondria to provide energy for muscle contraction.


3. Palisade cell

  • Its function is to make food by photosynthesis.
  • Packed with chloroplasts that contain chlorophyll for absorption of light.
  • They are columnar and closely packed to increase surface area for absorption of sunlight and carbon dioxide.


4. Root hair cell

  • Responsible for absorption of water and salts from the soil.
  • Have thin cell walls to allow water and nutrients to pass easily from the soil
  • They are numerous to increase surface area for absorption of water and mineral salts as they are in close contact with the soil.
  • The hair like projection on each cell penetrates between the soil particles and offers a large absorbing surface area.
  • Large vacuole facilitates water absorption and storage.

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