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Golgi Body: Structure and Function

Golgi Body: Structure and Function

Author: Amanda Soderlind

Understand the Golgi body and its role in the cell.

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The Golgi Body

Source: Images and Video Created by Amanda Soderlind

Video Transcription

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In this lesson today we are going to discuss the structure and function of the Golgi Body in cells.

The Golgi Body is a cell organelle that is found in eukaryotic cells.

Eukaryotic cells are cells that contain a nucleus, such as ourselves, for example. So it's an organelle only found in eukaryotic cells.

The Golgi body is also sometimes referred to as the Golgi apparatus. You might hear it either way, but they're the same thing. Golgi body or Golgi apparatus. It's the same organelle that has the same function.

And that function is to modify, package, and transport materials throughout the cell. And the Golgi body, like the endoplasmic reticulum, is a part of the endomembrane system.

The endomembrane system is a system that makes lipids, modifies proteins, and packages molecules to send them out to various parts of the cell.

So again, that endomembrane system contains the Golgi, fatty, and the ER, or the endoplasmic reticulum.

We're going to discuss a little bit more about the structure of the Golgi body.

The Golgi body basically is thought of as flattened sacs. We have several these sacs that are flattened. And some people will refer to them as kind of being like pancakes piled on top of each other. That's kind of a common way that you may have heard of the structure of a Golgi body.

So we have all these flattened sacs, kind of piled on top of each other. And within those flattened sacs, there are enzymes. And the enzymes help to finish the production of proteins and lipids that were started by the endoplasmic reticulum.

The endoplasmic reticulum was kind of like the assembly line that would help to assemble those proteins and those lipids. And from there, they're sent to the Golgi body, where they're kind of finished off, and then packaged.

Once they're finished off, they're packaged into something called a vesicle.

Here we have example of several vesicles. These vesicles are basically just little stacks that contain the finished product, and will move it, or transport it, from the Golgi apparatus, through the cytoplasm, to wherever it needs to go in the cell. And it will have a specific location that it will have to go to in the cell.

That location will be determined by enzymes, or different tag molecules, that are added to that vesicle. And it will tell that vesicle where it needs to go within the cell.

Some vesicles, as in these examples, are used to transport different molecules throughout the cell, but other types of vesicles can contain enzymes that will help to break substances down within the cell.

Another type of vesicle you might be familiar with within a cell would be a lysosomes. Enzymes contained in the lysosome will help break down materials in the cell. It will help break down old cell parts, bacteria, anything that the cell does not want to have within it can be broken down by lysosomes.

So that's one example of a type of vesicle that can break substances down.

Again, vesicles are used to either transport substances, or sometimes to break down substances within the cell.

This lesson has been an overview of the structure and function of a Golgi body in eukaryotic cells.

Terms to Know
Endomembrane System

A system of cellular structures, including the endoplasmic reticulum, nuclear envelope, Golgi body, and vesicles, that is used to synthesize and package proteins and lipids.

Golgi Body

A cell organelle that packages lipids and proteins to be transported out of the cell.


A hydrophobic (water-repelling) biomolecule made up of glycerol and fatty acids; lipids include phospholipids, cholesterol and steroid hormones.


A small sac surrounded by a membrane which transports cellular products within the endomembrane system.