The defining feature that sets eukaryotic cells apart from prokaryotic cells is that they have membrane-bound organelles, especially the nucleus, which contains the genetic material, and is enclosed by the nuclear envelope. Eukaryotic cells also contain other membrane-bound organelles such as mitochondria and the Golgi apparatus. In addition, plants and algae contain chloroplasts. Eukaryotic organisms may be unicellular, or multicellular. Only eukaryotes have many kinds of tissue made up of different cell types.
Thumbnail: A 3D rendering of an animal cell cut in half. (CC -BY-SA 4.0; Zaldua I., Equisoain J.J., Zabalza A., Gonzalez E.M., Marzo A., Public University of Navarre).
Contributors and Attributions
Dr. Gary Kaiser (COMMUNITY COLLEGE OF BALTIMORE COUNTY, CATONSVILLE CAMPUS)