Another form of endocytosis is called phagocytosis or “cell eating” and occurs when receptors on the cell’s surface encounter a particle to be ingested. The cell then extends a projection called a pseudopod.
In mammals, the object is often an invading microorganism or cellular debris from damaged tissue. The pseudopod surrounds the item, and the membranes fuse together, creating a vacuole with the particle trapped inside. Eventually, the vacuole fuses again—this time with a lysosome, which is full of enzymes, ready to digest its “meal”.