Is Cell Wall Made Of Cellulose: 9 Facts You Should Know

The cell wall, a specific type of extracellular matrix that surrounds every cell in a plant, serves a variety of crucial roles, including defence, construction, and support.

Cell wall is made up of cellulose along with polysaccharides, hemicelluloses, and pectin. Other polymers like lignin, suberin, or cutin are frequently embedded or anchored to plant cell walls.

The composition of the cell wall changes depending on the organism. Let us discuss if all types of cell walls are made of cellulose, what is cellulose made of, why is cell wall made of cellulose, is cellulose a plasma membrane and some other related questions in this article.

What is cellulose made of?

Cellulose is the major material and component of plant cell walls. Cellulose is essential to plant structure and strength. Let us see what it is made of.

Cellulose is a molecule made of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen atoms. Cellulose is the major material in plant cell walls, and it helps keep plants rigid and erect. It is a polysaccharide polymer with a high concentration of glucose monosaccharide units.

A polymer is a lengthy, repeating chain of the same molecule glued together. Cellulose is a long-chain polymer composed of glucose molecules linked together. It is prevalent in bacterial and plant cell walls.

Are all cell walls made of cellulose?

Cellulose is an organic molecule that belongs to the polysaccharide class. It is a glucose-based polymer. Let us see if all cell walls are made of cellulose.

Not all cell walls are made of cellulose. The cell wall accounts for the majority of the plant’s dry weight and is made up mostly of three polymer components in which dry plant has 40 to 50% cellulose, 15 to 25% hemicelluloses, 20 to 25% lignin, and 5 to 10% additional components.

Which cell walls are made of cellulose?

Cellulose, the most common macromolecule on the Earth, is used to construct plant cell walls. Let us check which cell walls are made of cellulose.

Plant cell walls are made of cellulose. A cell wall surrounding the plasma membrane is present in plant cells. Cellulose fibres, which are long, linear polymers are made up of hundreds of glucose molecules. Microfibrils are bundles of roughly 40 fibres formed by these fibres.

800px Plant cell showing primary
Image credits: Plant cell wall by Caroline Dahl (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Microfibrils are embedded inside a hydrophilic polysaccharide matrix.

Which cell walls are not made of cellulose?

Cell walls composed of cellulose are present in plant cells and a few other creatures. Let us see which cell walls are not made of cellulose.

Bacteria and fungal cell walls are not made of cellulose. Bacterial cell walls are formed of peptidoglycan, (also known as murein), which is composed of polysaccharide chains that are connected together by unique peptides containing D-amino acids whereas chitin is found in all fungal cell walls.

Why is the cell wall made of cellulose?

The plant cell wall contains an important component known as cellulose. Let us see why cell wall is made of cellulose.

Cell wall is made of cellulose because cellulose molecules give the main cell wall, its tensile strength. It provides strength to the plant, assists in upright development, and is required for plant cell division.

Is the cell wall of fungi made up of cellulose?

The cell wall is a distinct and intricate cellular organelle made up of glucans, chitin, chitosan, and glycosylated proteins. Let us learn the composition of fungal cell walls.

The cell wall of fungi is not made up of cellulose. The cell walls of fungi include chitin and glucan. Oomycetes’ cell walls include up to 25% partly crystallized cellulose (-1,4-glucan) as well as the primary noncellulose component -1,3-glucan.

Is cellulose a plasma membrane?

The cell wall encircles the plasma membrane and offers tensile strength and protection to the cell. Let us see if cellulose is a plasma membrane.

Cellulose is not a plasma membrane. Cellulose is produced by cellulose synthase complexes that are found in the plasma membrane. In higher plants, these complexes form hexameric rosettes within intracellular compartments and are released to the plasma membrane.

Where is cellulose located in a plant cell?

To sustain plant cell walls, cellulose fibres are embedded in a polysaccharide matrix. Let us see where it is located in a plant cell.

Cellulose, a polymer comprising repeated unbranched (1-4) D-glucose units, is located at the plasma membrane which is generated by the cellulose synthase complex (CSC) in bacteria and plants.


From the above article, it can be concluded that, the fundamental structural element of the cell wall, cellulose, is largely responsible for its mechanical strength. Cell wall, cellulose, microfibril distribution and orientation play a role in regulating cell development.

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