Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Spaghetti Cell

What is it like inside a cell?  In my experience students come to my Introductory Cell Biology course picturing a cell as a bag of water with things floating around inside.  Maybe that isn't surprising since many of the structures inside cells (especially the cytoskeleton) aren't visible in a light microscope.

To help students develop a more accurate conception of what it's like inside a (eukaryotic) cell I started asking them to imagine a plate of spaghetti and meatballs stuffed into a small plastic bag.  There would be no empty space and nothing would be 'floating around' in there.

After using this analogy for a while I decided...why not do it as a demo.  Here's a video from lecture:

I always use a clean bag and gloves so I can eat the spaghetti for lunch later.  The meatballs represent organelles while the noodles taking up most of the space in the bag represent cytoskeleton.  I do this demo before covering motor proteins.  The spaghetti bag helps students understand the role of motor proteins...when large structures move inside a cell they are being dragged through a dense matrix.


  1. such kind of comics are a sure way to keep learning an interesting task for people. that is how i got through custom thesis writing. thank you so much for posting with this keep us updated with more

  2. Spaghetti cell? Sounds interesting, I would love to know about this thing more. I think I should take help from my senior friend who is more into these sorts of things. But first I must find buy assignment writing service online for my help in pending assignments. Then I will surely learn about this thing.

  3. What happens inside the cell? This is the million-dollar question I got the answer to from your post. Being a student, I must admit that your post was incredible to me and I will discuss this further with Dissertation Proposal Writing Service experts.

  4. If you want to save your hand from infection while working, then it is important to wear gloves. Buy the best hand gloves from the best online shop Work Gearz. To know more please visit our site. Leather work gloves

  5. Roseland Furniture promotion codes accessible with Express. Get 10% off when you join to Roseland Furniture. roseland furniture discount code