Cell biology (formerly cytology, from the Greek kytos, "contain") is a scientific discipline that studies cells – their physiological properties, their structure, the organelles they contain, interactions with their environment, their life cycle, division and death. This is done both on a microscopic and molecular level. Cell biology research encompasses both the great diversity of single-celled organisms like bacteria and protozoa, as well as the many specialized cells in multicellular organisms such as humans, plants, and sponges.
Knowing the components of cells and how cells work is fundamental to all biological sciences. Appreciating the similarities and differences between cell types is particularly important to the fields of cell and molecular biology as well as to biomedical fields such as cancer research and developmental biology. These fundamental similarities and differences provide a unifying theme, sometimes allowing the principles learned from studying one cell type to be extrapolated and generalized to other cell types. Therefore, research in cell biology is closely related to genetics, biochemistry, molecular biology, immunology, and developmental biology.
The endosymbiotic theory states that several key organelles of eukaryotes originated as symbioses between separate single-celled organisms. According to this theory, mitochondria and plastids (e.g. chloroplasts), and possibly other organelles, represent formerly free-living bacteria that were taken inside another cell as an endosymbiont. Molecular and biochemical evidence suggest that the mitochondrion developed from proteobacteria (in particular, Rickettsiales, the SAR11 clade, or close relatives) and the chloroplast from cyanobacteria.
The CoRR hypothesis states that the location of genetic information in cytoplasmic organelles permits regulation of its expression by the reduction-oxidation ("redox") state of its gene products.
CoRR is short for "co-location for redox regulation", itself a shortened form of "co-location (of gene and gene product) for (evolutionary) continuity of redox regulation of gene expression".