Plant cell wall, SEM

Plant cell wall, SEM

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Credit: Biophoto Associates/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Plant cell wall. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of cellulose microfibrils (strands) in a plant cell wall. Unlike animal cells, plants cells are enclosed in a protective rigid cell wall. The main constituent of the wall is cellulose, a complex polysaccharide that forms microfibrils. Two other polysaccharides, pectin and glycan, cross-link with the cellulose to increase the strength of the cell wall. Cellulose microfibrils measure between 5 nanometres and 15 nanometres in diameter.

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Keywords: botany, cell, cell wall, cellulose, colorized, colour enhanced, complex carbohydrate, cross-linking, enhancement, glycans, histology, microfibril, micrograph, microscopy, pectins, plant, plant cell wall, plant structure, polysaccharide, scanning electron micrograph, sem

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