Biology Forum Cell Biology Advantages of unicellular organisms over multi-cellular?

last updated by jwalin 13 years ago
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    • #12689
      jessssxloveee
      Participant

      Hi everyone – I have a quick question.

      I know a lot of advantages of multicellular organisms over unicellular, but I can’t seem to find any advantages of unicellular organisms over multicellular. My textbook has proven to be no help, and I haven’t have much luck online.

      The only thing I can think of is that their smaller size makes it easier to hide in smaller places, and less likely to be found by predators. Then again, size is an advantage of multi-cellular organisms since they’re larger and better abled to take down predators, so it would seem contradictory, am I right?

      Specifically, I’m wondering about protists, but anything regarding any type of organism to get me at least thinking would be a great help. Thanks!

    • #97155
      plasmodesmata11
      Participant

      lots of unicellular organisms will reproduce asexually. There are distinct advantages here, like not having to expend the energy of finding a mate. What you mentioned before about their samll size and being a protist… Trypanosomes and apicomplexans that cause african sleeping sickness and malaria, respectively, are parasites. If they were much larger, they may not be able to parasitize. Also maybe you could say something about advantages of taking in energy by diffusion/ osmosis rather than through a digestive system.

    • #97163
      JackBean
      Participant

      What you mentioned is nonsense as unicellular organisms are probably predated by other unicelllar organisms, so the size kind of doesn’t matter.

      IMHO the main advantage is the speed of reproduction, possibility to use almost everything as energy source.

    • #97176
      jwalin
      Participant

      jackbeans is right

      and another thing it needs no complex systems like the digestive, circulatory or excretory and hence can reproduce very easily.

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