The main difference between lysosome and vacuole is that lysosomes store enzymes to break down various substances, whereas vacuoles store various substances.
Lysosome and vacuole are two compartments that store different substances. Both are membrane-bound organelles.
Key Areas Covered
1. What is Lysosome
– Definition, Facts, Features
2. What is Vacuole
– Definition, Facts, Features
3. Similarities Between Lysosome and Vacuole
– Outline of Common Features
4. Difference Between Lysosome and Vacuole
– Comparison of Key Differences
5. FAQ – Lysosome and Vacuole
– Answers to frequently asked questions
What is Lysosome
Lysosome is a proteolytic machinery responsible for protein degradation through autophagy. Autophagy is an essential process for determining protein quality and quality control. It recycles damaged proteins, aggregates, and organelles in the cell, clearing up the cell and providing building blocks to replace the depleted cellular components. Also, it protects against the stress created by nutrient deprivation as well. Autophagy is pro-survival, allowing the cell to undergo stress.
Furthermore, the lysosome is a membrane-enclosed vacuole in the cytoplasm containing hydrolytic enzymes. A lysosome’s primary function is to help digest biomolecules like lipids, nucleic acids, peptides, carbohydrates, etc. The hydrolytic enzymes in the lysosome occur in the endoplasmic reticulum. They travel from the cis phase of the Golgi apparatus to the trans phase by packaging in secretory vesicles. Finally, they leave the trans phase of the Golgi apparatus as lysosomes. Also, the pH of the cytoplasm is around 7.2. However, the pH inside a lysosome is 4.5-5.0. That means the internal environment of the lysosome is acidic. It is due to the requirement of an acidic pH by the action of the hydrolytic enzymes in the lysosome.
What is Vacuole
A vacuole is a type of vesicle mainly containing water. Vacuole is a characteristic feature of plant cells, but it can also be found in animal cells, bacterial cells, protists, and fungal cells. It contains organic compounds, including enzymes and inorganic compounds other than water. The fusion of multiple vesicles forms a vacuole. A vacuole’s size and shape vary depending on the cell’s requirements.
Function of Vacuole
The function of the vacuole varies with the type of cell which contains the vacuole. The major functions of the vacuole are described below.
- Storing water in plants
- Regulating internal turgor pressure
- Regulating internal pH
- Storing small molecules
- Isolating harmful materials to the cell
- Storing waste products temporarily and exporting them when needed
- Supporting structural rigidity in plant cells
- Increasing the size quickly by just using water
- Storing proteins, which are required by germination. Moreover, branches of the abdominal aorta are:
Similarities Between Lysosome and Vacuole
- Lysosome and vacuole are two membrane-bound organelles that store different substances.
Difference Between Lysosome and Vacuole
Lysosome refers to membrane-enclosed organelles that contain an array of enzymes capable of breaking down all types of biological polymers—proteins, nucleic acids, carbohydrates, and lipids. In contrast, vacuole refers to a space or vesicle within the cytoplasm of a cell, enclosed by a membrane and typically containing fluid.
Lysosome occurs in many animal cells while vacuole occurs in plant and fungal cells and some protist, animal, and bacterial cells.
Lysosomes contain hydrolytic enzymes, while vacuoles contain excretory substances and pigments.
Lysosome performs phagocytosis while the vacuole forms the major part of the cell.
Derived from Golgi
Lysosome is derived from the Golgi apparatus, while vacuole is not derived from the Golgi apparatus.
The bursting of the lysosome causes autolysis, while the bursting of the vacuole does not cause autolysis.
FAQ: Lysosome and Vacuole
What is the difference between a lysosome and a vesicle?
In animal cells and protists, lysosomes degrade old materials and digest food. In contrast, vesicles store and release materials into the cell or to the extracellular environment.
What is the difference between a lysosome and a food vacuole?
Food vacuoles are single-membrane-bound organelles that form when the food materials contact the cell’s plasma membrane. In contrast, lysosomes fuse and break down food matter using hydrolytic enzymes.
Is a lysosome a vesicle or a vacuole?
Lysosomes are vesicles containing digestive enzymes. They only occur inside animal cells. Also, they are a part of the cell’s recycling system. Additionally, they initiate cell death.
In brief, lysosome and vacuole are two membrane-bound organelles in the cell. Lysosome occurs in many animal cells. It is derived from the Golgi apparatus. Also, it contains hydrolytic enzymes to undergo phagocytosis. Bursting of the lysosome causes autolysis. In comparison, vacuole occurs in plant and fungal cells and some protist, animal, and bacterial cells. It contains excretory substances and pigments. Also, it forms a major part of the cell. Therefore, the main difference between lysosome and vacuole is their content.
- Cooper GM. The Cell: A Molecular Approach. 2nd edition. Sunderland (MA): Sinauer Associates; 2000. Lysosomes.
- Encyclopædia Britannica, inc. (n.d.-c). Vacuole. Encyclopædia Britannica.