In terms of real estate in a cell, two of the richest organelles are the nucleus and the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). In this colorful cartoon, the nucleus is an orange sphere containing the cell’s DNA wrapped into chromosomes and condensed, as it would be when undergoing cell division.

Morphologically the ER is much more diverse, consisting of sheets and tubules that are constantly remodeled and which extend throughout the cell.

The main function of the ER is protein synthesis using ribosomes (the yellow dots) and protein folding.

Thank you to Aleksandr Kakinen, a Research Fellow at the University of Queensland (Australia) and founder and scientific illustrator at Alex Kakinen Studio.

Author: Aleksandr Kakinen

Software: Autodesk Maya

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