It is quite a simple structure and consists of a single wall membrane and enzymes inside it, lysosomes are basically vesicles filled with dissolved digestive enzymes. The main role of a lysosome is to digest/break down any damaged or unwanted foreign material in the cell. The membrane simply absorbs the material and digests it. In the image to the left we can see a Lysosome digesting a fragment of mitochondrion and a Peroxisome fragment.It is also involved in programed cell death (apoptosis).
"If cells are no longer needed, they commit suicide by activating an intracellular death program. This process is therefore called programmed cell death, although it is more commonly called apoptosis (from a Greek word meaning “falling off,” as leaves from a tree)." (Bruce Alberts, Alexander Johnson, Julian Lewis, Martin Raff, Keith Roberts, and Peter Walter. (2002). Programed Cell Death. Available: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK26873/. Last accessed 12 March 2012.)
The inside of a Lysosome has a maintained high acidity, which allows the over 40 enzymes; which include proteases,
nucleases, and phopholipases; to work effectively. Therefore if any of the contents within a lysosome was to leak out then the cytoplasm would remain quite unscathed
Just as Lysosomes are like the cleaner/recylers of a cell we can see that airpor cleaning staff are like the lysosomes of an airport. With their enzyme filled squirters at the hand they can clean any stain, as for the larger pieces of rubbish they collect they and will send them of to be recycled. Eventhough the Lysosome and the Airport cleaners dont exactly function the same way there are still outstanding similarities.