Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
A somatic cell is a type of cell in an organism, such as the human body.
Cells can be divided into two types- those that are part of the germline, and cells that are not. Somatic cells are those cells that are not part of the germline.
Your liver is made entirely of somatic cells, your heart is made entirely of somatic cells, your hands are made entirely of somatic cells. Somatic cells are also called "body cells."
But genetic material in the cells of your liver or arm or hand will never make it to your children.
All somatic cells have 46 chromosomes, making them diploid cells. Gametes, in contrast, have only 23 chromosomes, making them haploid cells. (But not all non-somatic cells have only 23 chromosomes. Consider the zygote.)
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