Functions of Organelles: Lysosomes

These are cellular organelles found in animals they have many functions including breaking down waste materials as well as cellular debris using acid hydrolase enzymes. The digestive enzymes of a lysosome works around a pH of 4.5, it is the membrane surrounding this organelle that allows for these enzymes to work at this pH. Lysosomes contains a variety of enzymes namely, protease, amylase, phosphoric acid and lipase.

Below are some common functions of lysosomes:

  • Lysosomes as stated above, contains numerous amounts of enzymes, some of these enzymes are capable of digesting a wide variety of substances.
  • They are capable of digesting membranes and organelles, this function is of great importance because it allows cells to remodel or replace old organelles.
  • They are often called “suicide bags” because of their ability to rapidly digest an entire old cell.
  • Digesting foreign bacteria and other waste substances.
  • Digesting macromolecules.

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2 Response to Functions of Organelles: Lysosomes

June 10, 2011 at 6:08 AM

It's quite amazing to read that such ultra microscopic cell elements perform such important activities. I remember studying this when I was at school.

June 14, 2011 at 4:30 AM

Really interesting post. You've brought me back to my school years!! Thanks for the ride!

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