Osmosis : Finding A Happy Medium Essay

1616 WordsOct 30, 20167 Pages
OSMOSIS: Finding a Happy Medium INTRODUCTION All living things are made of cells. Cells are the building blocks for organisms from the smallest bacteria to the largest mammal. These cells require essential elements to survive. One component of these essential elements is water (Krogh). Water assists in the movement of molecules from higher concentrations to lower areas of concentration within living cells through diffusion and osmosis. These processes help maintain an equilibrium between the cell and its environment (Keirle). Diffusion occurs when there is a concentration gradient of particles in a cell (a portion with a greater amount of particles in one area and less in another); when given time these particles will on their own, spread out evenly throughout the same area. When there is a semi-permeable cell membrane, only certain particles are permitted to enter the domain of the cell requiring osmosis to move water between the cell and its environment. (Kahn). Cells must maintain tight controls on osmosis to prevent dying. Too much or not enough water is harmful, and cells, which include plant cells, know how much water is needed for survival and use diffusion and osmosis to maintain homeostasis. This process is easily seen without a microscope in plants. When your houseplant does not have enough water the plant begins to wilt becoming unable to keep itself upright. Once you water your houseplant you will see the plant stand upright again (Keirle). In this experiment,

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