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Discussion of all aspects of cellular structure, physiology and communication.
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Need help with an alien cell (for a plausible fiction)

Tue Feb 08, 2011 1:48 pm

Sup. I am in the prosses of both writing a novel trilogy and developing an encyclopaedia regarding the science behind the novels.

The story plays off on the fictitious planet of Novusvita in the factitious trinary Algol solar system.

Now, on this planet there is complex life, coming forth in three distinctive forms or domains: Liquiphita (life based within organic fluids), Minerallia (life which builds vestages for itself using materials at hand - biological mineral deposision) and Imperia (life made up of microscopic cells).

Now, this topic is about the cells of the Imperia group, so perhaps I should tell you a bit more about the Imperia:

-They are the youngest of the three domains of life on the planet.
-They are both multi- and unicellular in different cases.
-Most macroscopic multicellular Imperians consist of two things: Living cells and abiotic fibres, created by their cells. These fibes include skin tissue, bone fibre (which consists mainly of calsium and ceramic glass), hairs/feathers (where applicable), nails (where applicable) and other things that do not need to be alive to function.
-The atmosphere of Novusvita (mainly the troposphere) consists mostly of corbon dioxcide. Thus, this is what they breath.
-Imperia may or may not be carbon-based and do not share our exact DNA or RNA structures.
-That's about it.

Now for the cells.

Here's a rough image of a general Imperia cell done in MS Paint:


In the Imperia cell, these are basically three parts:

-The Cell Wall - This double membrane structure is selectively permiable and contains bubble-like organelles which basically substitute for plastids (all types), mitochondria, lisosomes and vacuoles (all types). These bubble-like bodies are called Ebulloids (derived from the Latin for "bubbles") and have the ability to morph into any of the others when needed. Within the cell wall, granuals of... stuff can also be found between the Ebulloids. I don't know what they are yet - I just thought that's something you'd find there. The jelly-like fluid found between the double membrane, Ebulloids and granuals is called the Exoplasm. Most cell-prosseses involving storage, nutrition and energy production takes place in the cell wall.

-The Cell Cavity - This is the large, fluid-filled interior of the cell. It contains a substance simmilar to sitoplasm and the interior organells. Prosseses such as protein synthesis takes place within the Cell Cavity.

-The Nucleus - Much like nuclei in Eukaryotes on Earth, the Imperia nuclei contain the genetic code of the individual and controll the prosseses of the cells. Unlike Eukaryotes, Imperia cells aren't limited to a single nucleus. There are up to seven or more in some cells, though one is still the norm. Nuclei within a cell are "fastened" to the interior cell wall and other nuclei via "strands" simmilar to the endoplasmic reticuli of Eukaryote cells on Earth.

Here is a rough, labelled MS Paint image of the cell wall, including the Ebulloids:


Now, a bit more on the Ebulloids. All Ebulloids have a double membrane. In most, this is barely noticable, as the membranes are squeezed tightly onto each other by the lack of... stuff between them. However, in Ebulloids such as the lisosome-subs, the space between the membranes "inflates" and becomes filled with... stuff, creating a tough wall. There are normally no structures within the Ebulloids (save perhaps for the mitochondria-subs' cristea-subs, and the chloroplast-subs' thylacoid subs, both created by the inner membrane) and they usually only contain the fluids/material stored or used within them (chlorophyll/pigment/starch/enzimes/etc.) They have a highly maluable and almost amoebal structure and are able to slip past one another, rearange and move around in the cell wall.

Here are the diffirent types of Ebulloid:

-Protobulloid - Proplastid sub - Spawned from the cell wall's outer membrane folding in on itself - later able to become any of the other types of Ebulloid.
-Etiobulloid - Etioplast sub - Ebulloids that are to become Chlorobuloids. Aids in the initial production of pigment.
-Chlorobulloid - Chloroplast sub - Contains chlorophyll for photosinthesis - inner membrane spawns thylacoid-subs. Mainly found in flora.
-Chromobulloid - Chromoplast sub - Contains pigment that provides cell with colour.
-Leucobulloid - Leucoplast sub - Basic storage unit.
-Proteinobulloid - Protienoplast sub - Stores protien.
-Elaiobulloid - Elaioplast sub - Stores fat.
-Amylobulloid - Amyloplast sub - Stores starch.
-Statobulloid - Statolith Sub - Gives one side of cell greater weight than the other, allowing for a sence of gravity. Mainly found in flora.
-Vacuobulloid - Central Vacuole sub - Maintains cell's structure by storing water - becomes largest Ebulloids. Mainly found in flora.
-Ponderabulloid - Contractile Vacuole sub - Ejects unwanted fluids and maintains a suitable fluid concentration within the cell.
-Nutriobulloid - Food Vacuole sub - A bubble containing a captured food particle. Food captured by outer membrane of cell wall engulphing the said particle, before folding in on itself as a new Ebulloid. not spawned from a proplastid sub - later able to become one.
-Lisobulloid - Lisosome sub - Digests food particles captured in food vacuole subs and aids in cell-selfdestruction when needed. Attaches to Nutriobulloid during "digestion". Gives inner membrane of Nutriobulloid. Has a thick double membrane to keep in potent enzimes.
-Pneumbulloid - Mitochondria sub - Responcible for cell respiration and energy release using oxygen produced in the Chlorobuloid or Converbuloid. Has a madly folded inner membrane (cristea-subs).
-Convobulloid - Extracts oxygen from carbon cioxide using silica and some or other form of enzime, perhaps. Mainly found in Heterotrophic Imperians.
-Exobulloid - An ebulloid, containing whatever, which is ejected out of the cell and into the outside. These external boddies are able to merge with other cells or break down in the outside. They can be used to transmit messages and... stuff. To eject the ebulloid, the outer membrane of the cell wraps around it before breaking off. Thus, Exobulloids have a tripple membrane.

And now for the interior organelles (these are the organelles found in the cell cavity):

-Endobulloid - Vescicle sub - Endobulloids are tripple
membraned bubbles within the cell cavity, formed in the same way as the
exobulloid. They aid in fluid transfer to and from organelles and the
outside and are able to remerge with the cell wall.
-Replicoid - (Aka Replisome) Technically a temporary part of the inner cell membrane, the replicoids are small bumps that form on the inside of the inner cell membrane.
Within these bumbs, the matter is arranged to form any of the other interior organelles (excluding Endobulloids). The replicoid then breaks off the inner cell
membrane in the form of said organelle and drifts into the cell cavity.
The only exception is the ER, where the replicoid coils out and
elongates untill it comes in contact with a nucleus.
-Endoplasmic Reticulum - Unlike the ER in Eukaryoticcellson Earth, the ER in Imperia cells are long strands of cell matter that normally extend from the nucleus to the inner cell membrane and vice versa. They are thin tubules containing a saluted liquid
within a permiable membrane. They play an important role in protein
synthesis and nuclear division and transmit electrical signals between
the nucleus and the cell wall. During nuclear division, an ER will form
between the split nuclei from the nuclear membrane.
-Ribosome - Does what ribosomes do on Earth.
-Mitosome - These are tiny blubbous organelles that are both responcible for
creating and maintaining the cytoskeleton protein chains and play a huge
role during cell division. During mitosis, mitosomes expand and latch
on to the inner cell membrane in a ring. They then move inward, forming a
thin double membrane through the centre of the cell. Once in the
centre, the mitosomes invert themselves into the interior of this
membrane and form what will become the new outer membranes. At the end
of the prosses, they themselves are part of the new exoplasm. (I'll make a diagram later.)

And finally the exterior organelles (these are organelles which can be found on the exterior cell membrane):

-Cilia - Fine hair-like structures that allow for movement and sometimes subtance intake.
-Flagellum - Tail-like structures that allow for speedy movement.
-Cnidocyte - Named after the harpoon-like stinging cells in Cridarians on Earth, cnidocytes are sack-like circular folds in the outer membrane which contain an emencely thin coil, attached to the membrane at the base. When stimulated, the coil fires out in a harpoon-like fasion and pumps out material from an ebulloid bellow. For example, the cell could come in contact with a cell of th same size or larger, then attack it with a cnidocyte. The cnidocyte will then inject enzimes from a lisobulloid below and digest the prey cell while the cnidocyte coil holds on to it. The digested matter can then be easily obsorbed.
-Eyespot Apparatus - Light sensitive patches on the outer membrane.
-Myofillium - These are rubbery strands of actin, myosin and nebulin that normally lie just below the outer cell membrane. They are only found in the muscle cells of multicellular organisms and allow for muscle contraction.

Now, I figured this out yesterday. This is the basic "energy chain" that takes place in the cell, mainly the cell wall:

Most of the "waste" gets reused in other parts of the body.

Anyway, the main problem right now is this: Where does the energy needed for the Convobulloid to function come from? It can't be dependant on daylight.

Tue Feb 15, 2011 1:31 pm

Please, people. I wanna validate that this is actually possible.

Thu Mar 24, 2011 2:50 pm

Oh well...

Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:23 am

Too long, too bad :(

Anyway, it's quite sure, that they breath, what's in the atmosphere, so they must breath CO2, if is it present, but question is, whether they can get any energy from that.

Second, for your metabolism. What the hell is SiCO? :roll:
You should futher study chemistry, especially perpetuum mobile and 2nd thermodynamical law ;)
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