Discussion of all aspects of cellular structure, physiology and communication.
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First of all, concentration gradient is the change in concentration from one area to another. An isotonic solution has the same concentrations of solute and solvent (water) as the cell, so there is no net change of water into or out of the cell. A hypertonic solution has a lower concentration of water than the cell, therefore there is a net movement of water OUT of the cell (from a higher concentration to a lower concentration - osmosis) and so the cell shrinks. The shrinking of the cell is called crenation in animal cells, and plasmolysis in plant cells. A hypotonic solution has a higher concentration of water than the cell, therefore there is a net movement of water INTO the cell (higher concentration to lower) and so the cell expands or bursts. This is called lysis for animal cells. For plant cells this expansion increases the turgor pressure of the cell and keeps the plant erect. Hope that helps with the first part of your question!
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