Basic Biology


What is the chemical composition of a typical mammalian cell?

Molecular Component % of Total Cell Weight
Water 70
Proteins 18
Phospholipids and other lipids   5
Miscellaneous small metabolites 3
Polysaccharides   2
Inorganic ions (sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium, chlorine, etc.)   1
RNA 1.1
DNA 0.25

Organelles are structures within a cell that serve specific purposes. (Cohen, B. J., and Wood, D. L. Memmlers The Human Body in Health and Disease. 9th Ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins, 2000.)

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