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Medicine LibreTexts

3.01: Objectives

After completing this section, you should know:

  • that cells can be different shapes and sizes
  • the role and function of the plasma membrane; cytoplasm, ribosomes, rough endoplasmic reticulum; smooth endoplasmic reticulum, mitochondria, golgi bodies, lysosomes, centrioles and the nucleus
  • the structure of the plasma membrane
  • that substances move across the plasma membrane by passive and active processes
  • that passive processes include diffusion, osmosis and facilitated diffusion and active processes include active transport, pinocytosis, phagocytosis and exocytosis
  • what the terms hypotonic, hypertonic isotonic and haemolysis mean
  • that the nucleus contains the chromosomes formed from DNA
  • that mitosis is the means by which ordinary cells divide
  • the main stages of mitosis
  • that meiosis is the process by which the chromosome number is halved when ova and sperm are formed


  • Ruth Lawson (Otago Polytechnic; Dunedin, New Zealand)