Transport Into & Out of Organisms (OCR Gateway GCSE Biology: Combined Science)

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Biology Lead

Transport Into & Out of Organisms

  • In order for any organism to function properly, it needs to exchange substances between itself and the environment
  • This exchange of substances occurs across the cell membrane
  • There are three transport processes that living organisms use for exchange: diffusion, osmosis and active transport
  • Organisms must take in:
    • Oxygen
      • For respiration
    • Water
      • Needed for transport and in many cellular reactions
    • Dissolved food molecules
      • Used to release energy, as well as for growth and cell repair
    • Mineral ions
      • Organisms need vitamins and minerals in small amounts, to help use other nutrients efficiently
    • Plants must also take in carbon dioxide
      • For photosynthesis
  • Organisms need to remove waste substances such as urea and carbon dioxide
    • If waste substances build-up within an organism, they can have negative effects due to their toxicity

Transport in unicellular organisms, downloadable IGCSE & GCSE Biology revision notes

Unicellular organisms such as amoeba do not require transport systems due to their large surface area to volume ratio

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Author: Lára

Lára graduated from Oxford University in Biological Sciences and has now been a science tutor working in the UK for several years. Lára has a particular interest in the area of infectious disease and epidemiology, and enjoys creating original educational materials that develop confidence and facilitate learning.