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The body of all living organisms is composed of numerous, small independent units called cells. Thus cell is considered as the basic unit of life and it is a physical entity. Cells can be broken up and individual parts can be extracted for study just as a physicist breaks up atoms. The cellular fragments, thus obtained, can function for some time; they may consume oxygen, ferment sugars, and even form new molecules. But these activities of fragments of cellular material do not constitute life itself as the behaviour of sub atomic particles is not equivalent to the behaviour of an intact atom. The fragmented cellular materials cannot  continue life indefinitely. The intact cell is the basic unit that can sustain life. The branch of biology which deals with the study of cell is called cytology or cell biology.

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