Endoplasmic Reticulum

ID #1973

Is the rough ER connected or continuous with the smooth ER at all, and if so is that significant for anything?

Yes, absolutely. The endoplasmic reticulum is one continuous compartment. What we call smooth ER is built like a series of interconnected tubules and does not have ribosomes attached to its surface, and the rough ER is make more like flattened sacs with ribosomes on the surface, but the lumen (interior space) is all connected. I don't know if there's a functional significance to this continuity, but in theory, a protein in the lumen of the SER could migrate through the RER and into the perinuclear space without having to go "outside" to get there.

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