Cell membrane

Relatively symmetric with respect to the lipid content of the bilayers.

Highly asymmetric; lipid composition of outer leaflet differs significantly from that of inner leaflet.

Cell wall

Composed of peptidoglycan; Gram-negative bacteria have an outer membrane as well.

Absent in animal cells; composition in other cell types may include: chitin, glucans and mannans (fungi), and cellulose (plants).


Single, circular DNA molecule is typical.

Multiple, linear DNA molecules. DNA is wrapped around histones.


Composed of protein subunits.

Made up of a 9 + 2 arrangement of microtubules.

Membrane-bound organelles


Present; includes the nucleus, mitochondria, chloroplasts (only in plant cells), endoplasmic reticulum, Golgi apparatus, lysosomes, and peroxisomes.


Absent; DNA resides as an irregular mass forming the nucleoid region.



70S ribosomes, which are made up of 50S and 30S subunits.

80S ribosomes, which are made up of 60S and 40S subunits. Mitochondria and chloroplasts have 70S ribosomes.


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