Main difference – Starch vs Cellulose vs Glycogen

Starch, cellulose, and also glycogen space three varieties of polymeric carbohydrates discovered in living cells. Autotrophs develop glucose as the simple sugar throughout photosynthesis. Every these carbohydrate polymers, starch, cellulose, and also glycogen, are comprised of involvement glucose monomer units together by different varieties of glycosidic bonds. They offer as chemical energy sources and also the structural components of the cell. The main difference in between starch, cellulose and also glycogen is that starch is the key storage carbohydrate resource in tree whereas cellulose is the key structural component of the cell wall of plants and glycogen is the main storage carbohydrate energy source of fungi and animals.

This post explores,

1. What is starch – Structure, Properties, Source, Function 2. What is Cellulose – Structure, Properties, Source, Function 3. What is Glycogen – Structure, Properties, Source, Function 4. What is the difference between Starch Cellulose and Glycogen


What is Starch

Starch is the polysaccharide synthesized by environment-friendly plants as their main energy store. Glucose is produced by photosynthetic organisms together a straightforward organic compound. That is converted into insoluble substances prefer oils, fats, and also starch for storage. Insoluble warehouse substances like starch perform not affect the water potential within the cell. They might not move away indigenous the warehouse areas. In plants, glucose and starch are converted into structural contents like cellulose. Castle are likewise converted into proteins i beg your pardon are required for the growth and repair of the moving structures.

Plants save glucose in staple foodstuffs like fruits, tubers choose potatoes, seeds prefer rice, wheat, corn, and cassava. Strength occurs in granules dubbed amyloplasts, arranged right into semi-crystalline structures. Starch is created of two types of polymers: amylose and amylopectin. Amylose is a linear and also helical chain however amylopectin is a branched chain. About 25% of starch in plants space amylose while the rest is amylopectin. Glucose 1-phosphate is first converted into ADP-glucose. Climate ADP-glucose is polymerized via 1,4-alpha glycosidic shortcut by the enzyme, strength synthase. This polymerization develops the direct polymer, amylose. The 1,6-alpha glycosidic bonds are presented to the chain by strength branching enzyme that produces amylopectin. Starch granules of rice are presented in figure 1.

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Figure 1: strength granules in rice

What is Cellulose

Cellulose is the polysaccharide i beg your pardon is consisted of of hundreds to many thousands that glucose units. The is the major component that the cell wall of plants. Countless algae and oomycetes also use cellulose to kind their cabinet wall. Cellulose is a directly chain polymer in i beg your pardon 1,4-beta glycosidic bonds room formed between glucose molecules. Hydrogen bonds room formed in between multiple hydroxyl groups of one chain with neighboring chains. This enables the two chains to be held together firmly. Likewise, numerous cellulose chains are involved in the development of cellulose fibers. A cellulose fiber, i m sorry is made up of three cellulose chains, is presented in figure 2. Hydrogen bonds in between cellulose chains are shown in cyan color lines.


Figure 2: A cellulose fiber

What is Glycogen

Glycogen is the storage polysaccharide that animals and also fungi. It is the analogue to starch in animals. Glycogen is structurally comparable to amylopectin yet highly branched 보다 the latter. Direct chain develops via 1,4-alpha glycosidic bonds and branches occur via 1,6-alpha glycosidic bonds. Branching wake up in every 8 to 12 glucose molecule in the chain. The granules happen in the cytosol that cells. Liver cells, and the muscle cells, keep glycogen in humans. When needed, glycogen is damaged down right into glucose by glycogen phosphorylase. The process is called glycogenolysis. Glucogon is the hormone i m sorry stimulates glycogenolysis. 1,4-alpha glycosidic and also 1,6-alpha glycosidic linkages that glycogen are displayed in figure 3.


Figure 3: bond in glycogen

Difference between Starch Cellulose and Glycogen


Starch: Starch is the main storage carbohydrate source in plants.

Cellulose: Cellulose is the key structural component of the cell wall surface of plants.

Glycogen: Glycogen is the key storage carbohydrate energy source of fungi and also animals.


Starch: The monomer of starch is alpha glucose.

Cellulose: The monomer the cellulose is beta glucose.

Glycogen: The monomer that glycogen is alpha glucose.

Bond between Monomers

Starch: The 1,4 glycosidic bonds in amylose and 1,4 and also 1,6 glycosidic bond in amylopectin occur between monomers the starch. 

Cellulose: 1,4 glycosidic binding occur between the monomers that cellulose.

Glycogen: 1,4 and also 1,6 glycosidic bond occur between the monomers of glycogen.

Nature the the Chain

Starch: Amylose is one unbranched, coiled chain and amylopectin is a lengthy branched chain, of i beg your pardon some room coiled.

Cellulose: Cellulose is a straight, long, unbranched chain, which creates H-bonds with surrounding chains.

Glycogen: Glycogen is a short, numerous branched chain of which some chains room coiled. 

Molecular Formula

Starch: The molecular formula of strength is (C6H10O5)n

Cellulose: The molecule formula the cellulose is (C6H10O5)n.

Glycogen: The molecular formula of glycogen is C24H42O21.

Molar Mass

Starch: Molar fixed of starch is variable.

Cellulose: Molar massive of cellulose is 162.1406 g/mol.

Glycogen: Molar massive of glycogen is 666.5777 g/mol.

Found in

Starch: Starch have the right to be found in plants.

Cellulose: Cellulose is uncovered in plants.

Glycogen: Glycogen is found in animals and fungi.


Starch: Starch serves together a carbohydrate energy store.

Cellulose: Cellulose is involved in the building of to move structures prefer cell walls.

Glycogen: Glycogen serves together a carbohydrate energy store.


Starch: Starch wake up in grains.

Cellulose: Cellulose wake up in fibers.

Glycogen: Glycogen occurs in little granules.


Starch, cellulose, and glycogen space polysaccharides discovered in organisms. Strength is found in plants as their significant storage kind of carbohydrates. Straight chains of starch are dubbed amylose and when branched castle are dubbed amylopectin. Glycogen is comparable to amylopectin however is highly branched. The is the significant carbohydrate storage kind in animals and fungi. Cellulose is a linear polysaccharide, which develops hydrogen bonds amongst several cellulose chain to form a fibrous structure. That is the significant component that the cell wall of plants, part algae, and fungi. Thus, the main difference between starch cellulose and also glycogen is their function in every organism.

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Reference:1. Berg, Jeremy M. “Complex carbohydrates Are created by link of Monosaccharides.” Biochemistry. 5th edition. U.S. Nationwide Library of Medicine, 01 Jan. 1970. Web. 17 may 2017. .

Image Courtesy:1. “Rice starch – microscopy” by MKD – Own job-related (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia2. “Cellulose spacefilling model”By CeresVesta (talk) (Uploads) – Own occupational (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia 3. “Glycogen” (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia