Golgi Apparatus Definition for Kids

Golgi Apparatus Definition for Kids


The Golgi apparatus represents a vital function within our bodies. If you are going to want to appreciate just how wondrous and complex the structures of our bodies are, then you are definitely going to want to learn more about the Golgi apparatus. This can include not only learning about the apparatus itself, but also learning more about how we came to understand this function.

It Goes By A Few Different Names

If you are just beginning to learn about the Golgi apparatus, it’s easy to get a little confused from the start. You are reading up on the Golgi apparatus, and then you come across terms like Golgi complex or Golgi body. How are these terms tied into the Golgi apparatus? Are they different?

The truth of the matter is that the Golgi apparatus goes by many names. Nonetheless, whether someone is talking about the Golgi body, the Golgi complex, or the Golgi apparatus, they are talking about the exact same thing.

It Was Named For An Italian Biologist

The Golgi apparatus derive its name from the Italian biologist who discovered it. Camillo Golgi was a noted biologist for a number of reasons. As you can imagine, his role in defining our understanding of the Golgi complex is perhaps his most significant achievement.

It Is A Packaging Organelle

The Golgi apparatus is a type of packaging organelle. What this means is that it is represented as a specialized function within the cell. Another example of a packaging organelle would be the endoplasmic reticulum, which is also known as ER. Another factor that is important to keep in mind is that while you can have various layers of your membranes that can resemble the rough ER. However, as you are going to want to remember, we are talking about some very differing functions.

The Foundation Of Vesicles

Your Golgi apparatus is going to work at gathering the simple molecules to combine them. The end result of this combination process is going to be molecules that have become a good deal more complex. The next stage in this process is going to involve taking your big molecules, having them packaged in your vesicles, and then storing them for later usage. It can also set about the task of having them sent away from the cell.

The Golgi apparatus is also a building organelle. What this means is that your Golgi apparatus is going to work at building lysosomes. You may also know these lysosomes as cell digestion machines. The Golgi complexes in plants can also create complex sugars, which they will then follow up on by sending them away in secretory vesicles. One of the most interesting additional facts about this involves having the vesicles created in the same fashion that the ER sets about it. As the vesicles are pinched away from the membranes, they will simply set about floating throughout the cell.

Understanding The Membranes

When you really get right down to it, you are going to want to appreciate the fact that the Golgi apparatus is really just a series of membranes. The membranes are stacked in a fashion that would certainly be reminiscent of pancakes.

You will find that single membranes are quite similar to cell membranes in the sense that both have 2 layers. These membranes work at surrounding the areas of fluid in which your complex molecules are stored and changed. Protein, sugar, and enzymes tend to be the kind of complex molecules that we are talking about. Since your Golgi complex is absorbing vesicles through the rough ER, you can also discover ribosomes within the pancake stacks.

Appreciating The Rough ER Relationship

One of the most important things to appreciate with the Golgi apparatus is the working relationship it shares with the rough ER. This complex works very, very closely with the rough ER, beginning with the point in which the protein is created within the ER, which also includes the creation of something known as the transition vesicle. Vesicles or sacs begin floating through the cytoplasm to your Golgi apparatus, at which point it will be absorbed. Once the work upon the molecules inside the sac has been completed, the secretory vesicle will be created. It will then be released into the cytoplasm.

At this point, the vesicle is moved to your cell membrane, with the molecules then becoming released from the cell.

A Good Example

At this point, you should have a pretty good indication of everything that must be understood about the Golgi apparatus. However, it can prove to be extremely useful to have a good example of this entire definition to work with. To that end, you are going to want to consider the epithelial cell. You are going to discover several Golgi complexes within this animal cell. The epithelial cell is notable for the fact that it consistently secretes mucus.