Importance of Mitosis in Living Organisms
An overview of mitosis
To understand the importance of mitosis in living organisms, it is imperative to know what mitosis is all about. Mitosis is a process of cell division that leads into formation of two daughter cells that are genetically identical to each other and to the original cell. It plays a significant role in the life cycle on a wide range of living things but in different levels.
Mitosis in unicellular organisms such as bacteria ensures asexual reproduction by making identical copies of one cell. In multicellular cells, mitosis plays the role by producing more and more cells for repair and growth. Therefore, the significance of mitosis in living organisms is largely influenced by whether the organism is multicellular or single celled.
Process of mitosis
Mitosis takes place in two different stages including division of the cytoplasm and division of the nucleus. Before the process begins, the cell duplicates its DNA therefore; making two copies of each chromosome known as sister chromatids. One chromatid goes to each single cell. Chromosomes condense before they start dividing the nucleus while the nuclear membrane dissolves to open the nucleus. This helps spindle fibers to attach to each chromosome and pull the chromatids (sister chromatids) from the opposite direction till they line up in the center.
The tension created will pull the chromatics apart from each other. One chromatid will go to the end of the cell. With chromosomes being fully and equally sorted, the nuclear membrane will further regenerate around them. This will momentarily produce a cell that has two nuclei. The final step of mitosis is splitting of the cytoplasm thus separating the cell into two.
With an overview of mitosis, it is now easy to understand its importance in living organisms.
What is the importance of mitosis in living organisms?
Mitosis generates two daughter cells with the same type and number of chromosomes as the parent cell. Since the chromosomes were produced from the same parent chromosome by exact DNA duplication, they are uniform or genetically identical cells. It is however imperative to note that the process of mitosis does not in any way introduce genetic variation. Therefore, it plays a significant role in maintaining genetic stability within populations of cells generated from parental cells.
Mitosis plays a crucial role in the growth of a living organism. The number of cells in an organism increases because of mitosis and new cells are generated which are always identical to the existing cells.
Cell replacement and regeneration
Regeneration and replacement of cells is another significant process of mitosis in living organisms. It ensures that all damaged tissues are repaired and that copies of the new cells as identical to the cells being replaced. Additionally, it helps in cell replacement as well as regeneration of missing parts to a different degree in multicellular organisms. A good example of cell regeneration in living organisms through the process of mitosis is regrowth of legs in newts and crustaceans to different degrees.
A wide range of plant and animal species reproduce by sexual means that involves mitotic cell division. Asexual reproduction takes place in the event where a single parent reproduces an offspring that is similar to itself genetically. Therefore, asexual reproduction is quite significant and an added advantage in a stable environment where the reproduced offspring receives genes from the parent that has lived survived and reproduced under the same conditions.
This means that the population can reproduce rapidly when it encounters ideal environment and conditions for its genes. For instance, Amoeba undergoes binary fission, development and growth of a new plant from a vegetative plant or organ such as a bulb and budding of yeast and Hydra.
From the above, it can be deduced that mitosis is an important process in living organisms. It enables the organisms to have ability to reproduce normal and steady cells for growth. Without it, body cells will not regenerate or grow again. On the other hand, cells are also imperative for mitosis to take place.
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