Mitosis is one of the interesting and extraordinary processes that take place in plant cells. Plant mitosis is a process whereby the plant cells divide and creates two identical copies of itself, which are known as daughter cells. Each of the daughter cells gets a whole copy of the genetic material contained in its parent cells. Plant mitosis is similar to animal mitosis the core difference is that animal cell do not develop a cell plate. Animal cell squeezes off in the middle in order to separate into two cells.
Mitosis in plants takes place in several phases. These phases have been identified in accord to the physical state of the chromosomes and the spindle. There are five phases of mitosis, but cytokinesis is considered as the sixth phase of mitosis by some scientists and biologists. These phases of mitosis include;
- Interphase- It is also referred to as cell’s resting stage, where a plant cell prepares for mitosis. At this stage, a cell is going about its normal business. For instance, a plant cell is duplicating chromosomes [highly condensed rods of Deoxyribonucleic Acid] during the interphase. This s stage is sometimes list at the end of the mitosis description, depending on the scientific source.
- The prophase- In this stage, a genetic material called Chromatin [DNA in the nucleus of a cell that has been condensed and modified into a relatively inactive state] condenses and forms chromosomes. These chromosomes are then connected together to make pairs joined at central point called centromere.
- Metaphase- In this stage the centromeres with microtubules move to different ends of the cell, resulting to pulling of chromosomes to the opposite ends of the cell. Centromeres also begin to form a point of separation in this stage.
- Anaphase-This is the other essential stage in the mitosis process in plants. Here, the chromosome pairs separate and half of a pair migrates to one end of the cell while the other half moves to the other end. The microtubules in the cell aid in lengthening of the plant cell.
- Telophase- It is the stage where microtubules and centrosomes break down. The leftover nucleus from the original cell creates a nucleus around the chromosomes at the opposite ends of the cell. Chromosomes then turn into chromatin again.
- Cytokinesis- it is the stage where the plant cells have to divide into two independent cells. The cell then develops a cell plate which serves to divide the single cell into two separate daughter cells which pull apart from each other with a copy of the original cell’s genetic material.
Mitosis in plants is a significant process in the sense that it plays a number of roles. Firstly, through the formation of new cells, there will be an increase in size and growth of parent plant. Hence, mitosis makes it easy to get better plants that can satisfy human needs. Secondly, mitosis gives rise to many cells which differentiate to form tissues, organs and organ-systems of the plant. Through formation of new cells, it becomes easy for plants to renew certain tissues and replace the worn out cells. Lastly, mitosis makes vegetative reproduction in plants easy.
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