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As a cell grows bigger, its internal volume enlarges and the cell membrane expands.
Unfortunately, the volume increases more rapidly than does the surface area, and so the relative amount of surface area available to pass materials to a unit volume of the cell steadily decreases.Finally, at some point, there is just enough surface available to service all the interior.
if it is to survive, the cell must stop growing. The important point is that the surface area to the volume ratio gets smaller as the cell gets larger.

Thus, if the cell grows beyond a certain limit, not enough material will be able to cross the membrane
fast enough to accommodate the increased cellular volume.
When this happens, the cell must divide into smaller cells with favorable surface area/volume ratios, or cease to function.
That is why cells are so small.

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Skylar Hagenes

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2y ago
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AnswerBot

1mo ago

Cells have a size limit because larger cells have more difficulty transporting nutrients and waste effectively due to their increased surface area-to-volume ratio. The cell membrane can only support a certain amount of activity and maintain proper function within a limited size range. Additionally, larger cells require more energy to maintain their functions, making them less efficient as their size increases.

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15y ago

This size restriction is due to the surface area to volume ratio (SA:V). As the volume of the cell increases, the surface area does not increase at the same rate (to test this, calculate the SA:V for varying sized cubes). For a cell to function effectively it needs to be able to transport molecules in and out of the cell, so the smaller the cell the more effectively it can carry this out.

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13y ago

The bigger the cell, the thicker the cell membrane and the farther oxygen has to travel to get to where it's needed. It is easier for a small cell to receive oxygen, because it doesn't have far to travel.

Think if you had two solid spheres that you placed in dyed water. One sphere was big, and the other small. These spheres would absorb the water at a constant rate. Which sphere would be completely colored (from the surface to the center) because of the dye? The small one would be completely dyed before the large one. Now think of this as a cell as the spheres and the dyed water as oxygen.

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Q: Why do cells have limit in size?
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