Pinocytosis (cell drinking) describes the internalization of extracellular fluid & small macromolecules by means of small vesicles. The cell takes in the fluids along with dissolved small molecules – the cell membrane folds & creates small pockets & captures the cellular fluid & dissolved substances. (“pino” means “to drink”)
Phagocytosis (cell eating) describes the ingestion of large particles such as cell debris and whole microorganisms by means of large vesicles. The process by which cells engulf solid matter is called phagocytosis.