• Question: Do cells eat anything? If so, then what?

    Asked by bexs14 to Sara, John Robert, Jean-Paul, Gemma, Connie, Becky, Alison on 22 Jan 2014.
    • Photo: John Robert Davis

      John Robert Davis answered on 22 Jan 2014:

      Good question, cells eat loads! The basic answer is that everything you eat, cells need to survive. They use sugar and proteins to make energy. But there are special cells called phagocytes, these cells ‘eat’ harmful bacteria, virus-infected cells and dust in and break them down as much as they can. These cells don’t do this for energy but as a way to make sure you don’t get ill.

    • Photo: Becky Cook

      Becky Cook answered on 22 Jan 2014:

      When growing cells in the lab, you grow them in media that contains the sugars and other molecules they need to survive. These molecules are in different forms to how you eat them, a cell wouldn’t be able to do much with a pizza or an apple because they can’t digest them into their components (such as amino acids or sugars).

    • Photo: Gemma Swiers

      Gemma Swiers answered on 22 Jan 2014:

      Even plant cells need energy to survive. They get this energy from the sunlight through a process called photosynthesis, and they get water from the soil.