What is the endoplasmic reticulum?



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    The endoplasmic reticulum is a system of membrane-enclosed sacs and tubules in the cell.  It is the part of the cell that constructs the protein and lipid components of most of the cell’s organelles.  There are two types of the ER.   There is the rough ER which is coated with ribosomes and creates proteins that are used in various organelles and the smooth ER is where they are packaged and shipped off to their destination by budding off the end of the smooth ER.  The smooth ER is also where lipids are created for the cell for various cell membranes and steroids that are secreted from the cell as well.    

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