Cell Analogy to Human Body

The cell is the fundamental, structural and functional living unit of life and forms the basis of life on earth. It is the smallest entity present in the body of all living organisms. The whole functioning of the living organism starts from the basic unit of life called the cell, and so it’s called the fundamental/ functional/ structural unit of life. Can we do an analogy between the cell and the human body? Humans are complex animals composed of different organ systems like the skeletal system, the respiratory and digestive systems etc. There is a division of labour in the human body just like in the cell. 

Assignment title: Cell Analogy to Human Body (Project)

Duration: 120 minutes

Learning objective: To make students understand the importance of cell organelles and their role in a cell.

Teacher Tips: 

  1. Give this assignment as a written prompt project with clear instructional objectives.
  2. Give this assignment in the form of a table to the students. Download the PDF here- Cell Analogy To Human body
  3. As a pedagogical approach, support the assignment with a diagram task. You can instruct the students to draw their analogy (Cell Analogy to Human Body) in the assignment sheet. Download the diagram assignment PDF here – Cell Analogy to Human Body_Diagram
  4. You can also modify the columns/rows as per the grade level of the students. Check out the Google sheet for Cell Analogy to Human Body here. 
  5. You can also give visual hints to the students for solving the assignment. A reference image is given below.

Download PDFs

Cell Analogy To Human body, Cell Analogy to Human Body_Diagram, Google sheet for Cell Analogy to Human Body here. 

Cell Analogy to Human Body

Nucleus analogous to the Human Brain

The nucleus is a double membrane-bound organelle present in the eukaryotic cells which contains the genetic material (DNA). The nucleus is known as the brain of a cell because just like a brain decides and controls the activity of the body, similarly, the nucleus controls the activities of a cell. The nucleus is also known as the control centre of the cell because it contains DNA which has the ability to encode proteins, these proteins are very much important for the survival of a cell and hence nucleus decides the fate of a cell.

Cell Membrane analogous to the Mouth

 This cell membrane is selectively permeable to some molecules present on either side of it and is similar in both eukaryotic and prokaryotic organisms. The human mouth also performs selective ingestion of food. 

Mitochondria analogous to the Lungs

Mitochondria is a cell organelle that plays a role in respiration. Oxidation of carbohydrates, lipids and proteins occurs in mitochondria. Lungs also play a role in respiration, especially in the breathing process (inhalation and exhalation). Breathing (also called pulmonary ventilation) is only the exchange of respiratory gases from the lungs to the blood and vice versa. Breathing is a part of respiration.

Cell Analogy to Human Body

Cell Wall analogous to the Skin

The cell wall is the outermost layer found in plant cells and fungal cells. The cell wall is absent in animal cells. It is mainly composed of different forms of carbohydrates. The cell wall acts as a barrier to infection. The cell wall protects the cell from mechanical injury. Cell wall acts as a barrier against undesirable macromolecules and prevents their entry into the cell. Similarly, the skin in the human body is serving as an external barrier. It has the role to protect the human body from external factors such as bacteria, chemicals, and temperature

Cytoplasm analogous to Body Water

The cytoplasm is the semi-fluid matrix (cytosol) present within the cell membrane containing cell organelles, salt, water, enzymes, etc. It is an aqueous fluid. The cytoplasm is the main arena or region of cellular activities. Similarly, water in the human body plays a role in metabolism and occupies 60-70% of the human body.

Chloroplast analogous to the Eyes

Although it is difficult to compare chloroplast with a human body part since humans are not autotrophs. Chloroplast is the type of plastid that is present in the green parts of plants. It contains chlorophyll and other pigments such as carotenoids. It is the photosynthetic organelle of plants. However, we can do an analogy between the chloroplast and the human eyes since they both receive light and are made up of pigments. The choroid is a highly pigmented and vascular layer of the eye.

Endoplasmic reticulum analogous to the Pancreas 

RER (rough endoplasmic reticulum) can be compared to Pancreas. They are associated with ribosomes and hence are known as RER. Ribosomes on the RER are involved in protein synthesis (translation). The pancreas is also involved in protein synthesis. For instance, proteinases are one category of enzymes.

Vacuole analogous to the Adipose Tissue

Vacuoles are large and prominent cell organelles in plant cells. They are also found in some cells of fungi, protists, animals, and bacteria. They have the role of storing cell sap. Similarly, the adipose tissue of the human body stores fat. The cells of this tissue called fat cells or adipocytes, are specialised to store fat. This tissue helps in the storage and metabolism of fat. 

Cell Analogy to Human Body

Ribosomes analogous to the Liver

Ribosomes are made up of two units: Large and small subunits. They are non-membrane-bound cell organelles involved in protein synthesis. They are coined with the term protein factories of the cell. The liver is one of the most important organs for making proteins. 

Cilia or Flagella analogous to the Limbs (legs)

Cilia is a small hair-like structure formed by microtubules. Cilia act as the locomotory organ for ciliated protozoans like Paramoecium. Flagella are elongated string/whip-like structures formed by microtubules. Flagella plays a role in the locomotion of various organisms like Euglena. In humans, only sperm cells have flagella. Analogous to these, the limbs in the human body, especially the legs help in locomotion (movement from one place to the other).Cell Analogy to Human Body

To summarize, the cell can be analogous in a lot of ways to the human body. Performing analogies help us understand the role of different cell organelles in a better manner.

Do you think cell is analogous to a protein factory? Keep reading to find out.

Thankyou for reading!

Team MBD








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