At the cellular level, the metabolic pathways recognized for protists are basically no various from those found among cells and tissues of other eukaryotes. Thus, the plastids of algal protists duty like the chloroplasts of plants v respect to photosynthesis, and, as soon as present, the mitochondria duty as the website where molecule are broken down to release chemical energy, carbon dioxide, and also water. The simple difference between the uncellular cells protists and also the tissue- and also organ-dependent cells of various other eukaryotes lies in the fact that the previous are concurrently cells and complete organisms. Together microorganisms, then, must lug out the life-sustaining functions that are generally served by body organ systems in ~ the facility multicellular or multitissued bodies of the various other eukaryotes. Numerous such attributes in the protists space dependent on relatively elaborate architectural adaptations in the cell. Phagotrophic feeding, because that example, requires more complicated processes in ~ the protist’s to move level, wherein no mix of tissues and also cells is easily accessible to bring out the ingestion, digestion, and egestion that particulate food matter. ~ above the various other hand, obtaining oxygen in the case of free-living, free-swimming protozoan protists is easier than for multicell eukaryotes due to the fact that the procedure requires only the straight diffusion that oxygen indigenous the bordering medium.

You are watching: How do protists get their food

Although most protists need oxygen (obligate aerobes), there room some that might or should rely on anaerobic metabolism—for example, parasitic develops inhabiting website without free oxygen and some bottom-dwelling (benthic) ciliates that live in the sulfide zone of certain marine and also freshwater sediments. Mitochondria frequently are not discovered in the cytoplasm of these anaerobes; rather, microbodies referred to as hydrogenosomes or specialized symbiotic bacteria act as respiratory organelles.


No devoted elimination mechanisms are existing in algae, fungi, protozoans, and also slime molds, the main groups of protists. Metabolic wastes...

The major modes the nutrition among protists are autotrophy (involving plastids, photosynthesis, and also the organism’s manufacture of its own nutrients native the milieu) and heterotrophy (the taking in of nutrients). Obligate autotrophy, i beg your pardon requires just a few inorganic materials and light power for survival and also growth, is properties of algal protists (e.g., Chlamydomonas). Heterotrophy may happen as among at least two types: phagotrophy, i beg your pardon is basically the engulfment of particulate food, and osmotrophy, the soaking up of liquified nutrients from the medium, regularly by the method of pinocytosis. Phagotrophic heterotrophy is watched in many ciliates that seem to call for live food as organic sources of energy, carbon, nitrogen, vitamins, and also growth factors. The food of free-living phagotrophic protists ranges from other protists to bacteria to plant and animal material, life or dead. Scavengers are numerous, especially among the ciliated protozoans; indeed, varieties of some teams prefer moribund prey. Organisms that can utilize one of two people or both autotrophy and heterotrophy are claimed to exhibition mixotrophy. Countless dinoflagellates, because that example, exhibition mixotrophy.



See more: Birds In Popular Culture: 10 Classic Movies With Birds In The Title Quiz

J.M. Langham

Feeding mechanisms and also their use room diverse among protists. They include the catch of living prey by the usage of encircling pseudopodial expansions (in specific amoeboids), the trapping of particles of food in water currents through filters developed of dedicated compound buccal oribelles (in ciliates), and also the an easy diffusion of dissolved organic material through the cell membrane, and also the sucking the end of the cytoplasm of certain host cells (as in plenty of parasitic protists). In the case of countless symbiotic protists, methods for survival, such together the intrusion of the host and transfer to new hosts, have emerged through long associations and often the coevolution that both partners.