The Truth About Life – The Nature and Function of a Prokaryote Cell
What is called Life on Earth is a Cell functioning that is primarily assimilation on purpose or a self sustainable assimilation. Any earthly element that uses assimilation as a self sustaining process is qualified to be called a Living Organism. On this Planet of ours, all living organizations have cell based structure and cell based functioning. The true Living Organism is the Cell.
To understand Life, we must meet and talk to the Cell.
The Cell is the simplest (not necessarily the smallest in general) but the simplest or the less complex matter-energy organization capable to sustain life.
Some cells are very simple while others are very complex.
In the Cell takes place the most elementary task that make up Life: the chemical reaction. Also, each cell part participates both in the structure of the Cell and in the functioning of the Cell. Therefore each cell component is a tool because it serves a purpose in the Cell. Some roles are passive and some are active but all small roles are necessary for the Cell to continue to be and live.
Because of the narrow relationship between structure and function in the cell, a simple cell lives a simple life and a complex cell lives a complex life. Indeed more tools (qualitatively and / or quantitatively) are needed for a more complex life.
Therefore the very basics of Life can be found only in the simplest cell: a Procaryote cell called the PPLO or the Pleuro-Pneumonia-Like Organism. It has:
- A Periphery made of naked cell Membrane
- A Cytoplasm made of Hyaloplasm and Ribosomes
- A Genetic Cente r called Nucleoid, made of a circular naked DNA molecule in a place free of Ribosomes.
Its Hyaloplasm compounds water, mineral salts, and organic matter in the form of sugars, lipids, RNAs, hormones, vitamins and most importantly proteins that include Enzymes, the most active cell components.
The PPLO is an obligate parasite living in the lungs of Mammals and can cause pneumonia to them. It is the search for the cause of cattle pneumonia that lead the French Louis Pasteur to discover the Mycoplasma, or the PPLO family. Pasteur in mid 1800s knew the PPLO was there but could not describe it because it is too tiny. Only the electron microscopy developed recently is able to show us what the PPLO is like.
How does the PPLO live?
- The rich physiological fluid in the host (the mammal) is filtrated by the PPLO Membrane to feed it. The same membrane is used also to expel waste products including some toxins from time to time, in the Mammal internal system.
- With its specific Enzymes the PPLO digests its food (mainly organic matter) and synthesizes its own organic matter-energy (needed organic molecules: enzymes, cell membranes structural lipids and proteins, sugars, RNAs, especially messenger RNA made on demand to allow specific protein synthesis, etc.)
- With other specific Enzymes the PPLO, knowingly or not, makes sure every organic body made goes to where it belongs in order to fit its role in the cell organism, replacing another molecule physically and / or functionally, or just taking its place at the right time in the life of the Cell.
True this continuous process every part of the Cell is renewed through time and the Cell grows and finally divides into two new cells after first duplicating its Nucleoid.
Some important roles of the PPLO parts are as following:
- The Membrane defines the Cell form and size and protects it. It is a filter that allows only certain molecules to enter or leave the Cell. It is also a communication medium between the cell and its environment!
- The Hyaloplasm supports Ribosomes and most of the chemical reactions that make up the life of the Cell. It is continuously renewed. The Hyaloplasm is the body of the Cell that changes matter-energy with the external medium (the Mammal lung structure).
- Ribosomes are the site of Protein Synthesis , thus the source of Enzyme production for the Cell, a key role in life processing
- The Unique circular chromosome is the model for RNA synthesis and for chromosome duplication. It sustains protein synthesis and preparations cell division.
- Enzymes are the most active cell components physically performing the basic tasks, the chemical reactions that are the most elementary tasks in the cell and that make up cell life. They act not only like tools but also like workers manipulating tools. They are self operating tools knowing what to do and how to do it in the right time at the right place. They are the managers of the cell life. They operate individual tasks and team work. They work everywhere in the Cell from the cell membrane to the Nucleoid, through the Hyaloplasm. The nature of their job is matter-energy transformation. Through their actions, given matter-energy is changed into another form of matter-energy most suitable for the wellness of the Cell. All tasks in the Cell are goal oriented; they serve a purpose in the Cell structure and function.
- Other molecules in the Cell surrounding Enzymes are either the basis or the end products or helper of Enzymes activities and fit their specific roles in the cell: non enzyme proteins, sugars, lipids, RNAs, vitamins, hormones.
There you have it! The basic life activity, the simplest life out there in the simpleest Cell that has been found so far: the PPLO and its Life.
Thank you for reading