Golgi apparatus

Definition

noun

(cell biology) An organelle that is comprised of membrane-bound stacks and is involved in glycosylation, packaging of molecules for secretion, transporting of lipids within the cell, and giving rise to lysosomes


Supplement

The Golgi apparatus is an organelle that is identified in 1898 by the Italian physician Camilo Golgi. It is also one of the components of the GERL complex.

The Golgi apparatus is made up of membrane-bound stacks called cisternae. Its function includes glycosylation (i.e. adding carbohydrate to a protein), packaging of molecules like proteins into vesicles for secretion, transport of lipids around the cell, and the creation of lysosomes.

With regard to functioning as the packaging center of the cell, the organelle sorts the proteins secreted by the endoplasmic reticulum into packages to be sent to the appropriate destination. The Golgi apparatus may modify the protein by adding sugar to produce glycoprotein through glycosylation. The glycoprotein that is bound to be transported outside the cell will be excreted as vesicles. If the glycoprotein is for later use, it may be stored in vesicles within the cell (e.g. as lysosomes).

The Golgi apparatus is present in eukaryotic cells where many substances such as proteins are secreted. In plants, this organelle is referred to as dictyosome. In flagellate protozoa, it is called parabasal body. The collective term for all the Golgi apparatus in the cell is Golgi complex.


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