Contrast the similarities and differences between cartilage and bone; include the organic and inorganic compounds found in each. 

Expert Answers
pacorz eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Cartilage and bone tissues are both made up of cells within a non-cellular matrix of non-living ground material. This gives them a similar structure, and they also share the function of support, protect, and movement.

The big difference between cartilage and bone tissues is in the composition of the matrix. In cartilage tissues, the matrix is protein or glycoprotein in nature, and ranges from fairly soft and pliable in elastic cartilage to quite rigid in hyaline cartilage. The matrix is nonliving, but is organic in nature, being produced by the cells. Consequently cartilage is able to withstand shock well.

Bone tissues have a much harder matrix composed primarily of calcium compounds. Because this matrix is a rigid solid, bone is typically stronger than cartilage under pressure or in shear force, but bone is quite inflexible and is more likely to crack or snap when flexed. The matrix of bone is inorganic in nature; the necessary mineral components must be obtained from the diet.

richard-damant | Student

Cartilage is a hard but flexible tissue made up of cells called chondrocytes within an organic matrix which consists of varying amounts of collagen fibrils. the matrix is produced by the condrocytes. Cartilage is elastic and able to withstand compressive forces. it is a very good shock absorber and is frequently found between bones such as the vertebre and in the joints.