Parts of a Cell

These are the parts of a cell and their analogies to parts of a city.

There are many vital parts to a cell (animal cell, since the only difference is the chloroplasts, which everyone knows is like the solar panels). Without these parts, a cell can not survive.

Cell Membrane:

This is a lipid bi-layer in which it controls what materials enter or exit the cell. They can either enter through homeostasis, where it is known as passive transport, or with ATP, in which it is active transport. They are selectively permeable, only allowing certain organelles inside.

They are most analogous to the Stone Walls w/ Gates of a city. The Stone Walls provide the “lipid bi-layer” which adds structure to the cell. The gates only allow certain people inside. Therefore, the gates provide the “selectively permeable” protection the cell membrane provides.


This is the membrane bound area (separated from cytoplasm) within a Eukaryotic cell where the chromosomes, DNA, certain proteins (e.g. histones) and the nucleolus are found. Similarly to the cytoskeleton (which will be mentioned later), the nucleus has a nuclear laminae, which adds support to the nucleus.

They are similar to the City Hall of the city. The City Hall is a secure building, where only certain people are allowed inside (the nuclear membrane is also semi-permeable). Also, the City Hall has support structures (similar to nuclear laminae) and has the data/information of the city.


This is the structure that is most associated with ribosome manufacturing. It consists of proteins and nucleic acids (it contains part of the DNA and is associated with the part of chromosomes that transcribes ribosomes), and is found in the nucleus.

The nucleolus is similar to the mayor of the City Hall. The mayor hires workers (ribosomes) to work for the city, and the mayor also contains much of the information for the city. Overall, the mayor is the best fit for the role of Nucleolus.

Golgi Apparatus:

This is the disk like formation inside of the cell (not to be confused with the Endoplasmic Reticulum, which has a similar appearance but is found closer to the nucleus). It receives shipments of proteins from the Endoplasmic Reticulum, baggages them, and ships them to other places of the cell through little vesicles, or out of the cell completely in a process known as Exocytosis. Not only is it associated with the shipment of packages, it is also the creator of lysosomes (which will be mentioned later).

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