Protoplasm Introduction Physical and Chemical Properties

Protoplasm: –

Hey, Biology here is our new blog on protoplasm. This word comes from the Greek words “protos” means first, and “plasma” means thing formed and that was given by J.E. Purkinje (Do you remember who gives your name? Comment below).

It provides medium for all the activities of living beings.  It was defined as the physical basis of life by Huxley (1868). Von Mohl said all living part of the cell is protoplasm. Max Schultz proposed Protoplasm theory. According to this theory, the cell consists of protoplasm that contains a nucleus and surrounded by a cell membrane. It also includes stored food, secretory substances, and excretory substances.

The secretory substances are enzymes, hormones, nector etc while excretory substances are alkaloids, gum, resin, tannin, latex mineral crystals etc

Do you know cystolith, raphides, and spheriphides are mineral crystals excreted by plants
Hyaloplasm–  fluid portion of the cytoplasm.

Want to know more about it. Let’s see their properties –

Physical properties: –

It is composed of a mixture of ions, amino acids, nucleic acids, proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates.
It is colorless, jelly-like, sticky, semi-transparent, granular, the semi-fluid substance that contains water.
Alveolar theory: –
It was recommended by Butchlli.According to him, It is an emulsion in many suspended drops or alveoli spread everywhere.

Granular theory: –
This principle was given by Altman. According to this, It made by small particles.

Reticular Theory: –
According to it, protoplasm is a dense network of fibers called reticulum.Fibrillar theory: –
Given by Fleming, It consists of fibrils that are embedded within the matrix.Colloidal theory: –
Protoplasm is a complex colloidal system, its colloidal nature was suggested by Fisher and Hardy. It contains most of the water in which various solvents of biological importance such as glucose, fatty acids, amino acids, minerals, vitamins, hormones, and enzymes are found.
The water represents dispersion phase in the protoplasm and the colloid particles represent the dispersed phase.

Protoplasm has following colloidal properties.

  1. Viscosity
  2. Sol and gel phase and their interchange
  3. Cohesiveness
  4. Elasticity
  5. Brownian movement of particles
  6. Diffraction of visible light
  7. Contractility
  8. Electric conductivity
Chemical Properties: –

Water – 75-85%
Proteins – 7-9%
Carbohydrates – 2-2.5%
Lipids – 1-1.5%
Inorganic materials – 1-1.5%
RNA – 0.7%
DNA – 0.4%

the inorganic materials substance are found in the form of the ion of calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron, nitrate, bicarbonate, chloride etc


You must know about following things-

Protoplasm of aquatic plants contains 95% water and Seed cells’ protoplasm contain 10-15% water
Inorganic materials are Ca, P, Mg, Fe, nitrate, sulfate, bicarbonate, chloride.

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Reference and Source –
Cell Biology, Gerald Karp
Principle of Biochemistry, Lehninger
Plant Biochemistry, Hans-Walter Heldt

1 Comment
  1. not better but good

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