What is Mitosis? | Genetics | Biology | FuseSchool

Ever wish you could clone yourself? Ever wondered how you grow? In this video you are going to learn exactly how our bodies do this. Well, maybe not quite clone yourself exactly… But your cells do it all the time. There are two types of cell division: Mitosis and Meiosis. Mitosis produces identical copies of cells and is how most of our cells divide. Then there is Meiosis for our gametes, because they (gametes) are different. Remember that gametes only have 23 chromosomes rather than the normal 23 pairs. In this video we are going to learn all about mitosis: the process of cell cloning. But before we start, to make sure you’re not in for a rocky ride, you need to know what all of these terms mean… Pause the video and have a look. Right so back to Mitosis. Mitosis produces identical copies of cells and is involved in Growth, Cell Repair and Asexual reproduction (which is how simple organisms reproduce). When cells divide by Mitosis the number of cells increases and hence the organism grows. So let’s get stuck in All cells contain two sets of chromosomes So in humans we have two sets of 23 chromosomes, making 46 in total. But to keep this simple. We are just going to look at what happens to one of these pairs of chromosomes. Drawing our 23 pairs each time would make it very busy. These chromosomes are homologous. Which means they carry the same genes. But they may have different alleles, which are alternatives of the same genes. So the chromosome from your dad may carry the blue eye allele and the one from your mum may carry the green eye allele. The DNA is exactly replicated, and each chromosome now becomes two identical chromatids joined by the centromere. Chromatid is the word we use to describe the newly copied chromosome; the identical copies. The chromosomes become attached to Spindle Fibres which run from one pole to another. The individual chromosomes line up at the equator of the cell. The Spindle Fibres shorten, and the centromere divides. So each chromosome becomes two separate chromatids. The Cell Membrane pinches to separate the two sets of chromatids into two cells. So the original cell has become two daughter cells. The daughter cells are identical to one another, identical to the parent cell. And have the same number of chromosomes as the parent cell. There is of course much more detail than this. But this is all we need to know for now. If you want to learn more just Google “Mitosis”. Okay, so maybe you can’t go out and clone yourself. But you do at least know how your cells managed to do it. From this video, you should now know that mitosis is how cells divide in order to grow and repair, or for asexual reproduction. When a cell divides by Mitosis, two new cells form and each cell is identical to the other, and also to the parent cell.


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