<cell biology> Membrane bounded cytoplasmic organelle containing a variety of hydrolytic enzymes that can be released into a phagosome or to the exterior. Release of lysosomal enzymes in a dead cell leads to autolysis (and is the reason for hanging game, to tenderise the muscle), but it is misleading to refer to lysosomes as suicide bags, since this is certainly not their normal function. Part of the GERL complex or trans Golgi network.

Origin: Gr. Soma = body

(11 Mar 2008)