Q:

What are the four phases of mitosis?

A:

Quick Answer

The four phases of mitosis are prophase, metaphase, anaphase and telophase. Each stage has its own process.

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Mitosis Overview

Mitosis is a form of cell division where one cell divides and creates two identical cells. The original cell is the called the parent cell, and the new cells are called daughter cells. The body uses mitosis for growth as our bodies mature and for repair. A cut or scrape requires mitosis of the nearest skin cells in order to heal. In general, there are four main phases in the mitosis process.

Prophase

The first stage of mitosis, prophase begins with DNA condensation. The chromosomes shorten and the nucleoli disappear. To prepare for organizing the chromosomes, the nuclear membrane breaks down as well.

Metaphase

In metaphase, the chromosomes line up in the middle of the cell by the newly formed spindle fibers. These fibers ensure that the DNA is placed in pairs so that each new cell will get one copy of each chromosome.

Anaphase

During anaphase the chromosomes separate, dividing evenly to both sides of the cell. These chromatids are now called daughter cells.

Telophase

The final stage of mitosis, the previous steps occur in reverse in telophase. The chromosomes decondense and grow longer, a new nuclear membrane forms, and nucleoli reappear. The cell division is now complete and two new cells have been formed.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are mitosis and meiosis?

    A:

    Mitosis and meiosis are biological functions that create cell division and enable reproduction. These two processes are similar in that they produce offspring cells, but differ in the type of cells they produce. While mitosis results in the generation of two identical daughter cells that originate from single parent cells, meiosis involves the fission of two nuclei, which produces four gametes.

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  • Q:

    How are mitosis and meiosis similar?

    A:

    Both mitosis and meiosis are types of cell division that share many similarities, and both share the same basic stages of prophase, metaphase, anaphase and telophase, according to the University of Illinois at Chicago. Both begin with changes in the organization of DNA in the nucleus of a cell.

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  • Q:

    What is a tetrad for meiosis?

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    A tetrad is a composition of four chromatids that are formed after synapsis occurs during the prophase I stage of meiosis I. Each of the tetrads contains two chromosomes, known as a homologous chromosome pair, with two chromatids per chromosome.

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  • Q:

    Which characteristics seen in prophase do not occur in prophase II?

    A:

    In prophase I the nuclear envelope disintegrates, and the chromosomes within condense and cross over. In prophase II there are half as many chromosomes, and these are sometimes already condensed from the previous process. Prophase II often resembles the prophase of mitosis more than prophase I does.

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