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Chapter 2: Cells and Cell Division

2-1: Cellular Links to Genetic Disease
The cell is the basic unit of structure and function. Mutations
cause gene products to be absent or to malfunction, and these
changes are reflected as abnormalities in cells. As a result, the
study of cells is a basic part of genetics.
2-2: The Chemistry of Cells
Cells contain four classes of macromolecules: carbohydrates,
lipids, proteins, and nucleic acids. These molecules provide the
structural and functional framework for all cells. Mutations in
genes that affect the structure or function of these
macromolecules create genetic disorders.
2-3: Cell Structure Reflects Function
The cell is the basic unit of structure and function in all
organisms, including humans. Because genes control the
number, size, shape, and function of cells, the study of cell
structure helps us understand how genetic disorders disrupt
cellular processes.
In humans, 46 chromosomes-the 2n, or diploid, number-are
present in most cells, whereas specialized cells known as
gametes contain half that number-the n, or haploid, number-of
2-4: The Cell Cycle Describes the Life History of a Cell
At some point in their life, cells pass through the cell cycle, a
period of non-division (interphase) that alternates with division of
the nucleus (mitosis) and division of the cytoplasm (cytokinesis).
Cells must contain a complete set of genetic information. This is
ensured by replication of each chromosome and by the
distribution of a complete chromosomal set in the process of
Mitosis (division) is one part of the cell cycle. During interphase
(non-division), a duplicate copy of each chromosome is made.
The process of mitosis is divided into 4 stages: prophase,
metaphase, anaphase, and telophase. In mitosis, one diploid cell
divides to form 2 diploid cells. Each cell has an exact copy of the
genetic information contained in the parental cell.
2-5: Mitosis Is Essential for Growth and Cell Replacement

Human cells are genetically programmed to divide about 50

times. This limit allows growth to adulthood and repairs such as
wound healing. Alterations in this program can lead to genetic
disorders of premature aging or to cancer.

2-6: Cell Division by Meiosis: The Basis of Sex

Meiosis is a form of cell division that produces haploid cells
containing only one copy of each chromosome. In an early stage
of meiosis, members of a chromosome pair physically associate.
At this time, each chromosome consists of 2 sister chromatids
joined by a common centromere. In metaphase I, pairs of
homologous chromosomes line up at the equator of the cell. In
anaphase I, members of a chromosome pair separate from each
other. Meiosis I produces cells that contain 1 member of each
chromosome pair. In meiosis II, the unpaired chromosomes line
up at the middle of the cell. In anaphase II, the centromeres
divide, and the daughter chromosomes move to opposite poles.
The 4 cells produced in meiosis contain the haploid number (23
in humans) of chromosomes.
2-7: Formation of Gametes
In males, cells in the testes (spermatagonia) divide by mitosis to
form spermatocytes, which undergo meiosis to form spermatids.
Spermatids undergo structural changes to convert them into
functional sperm.
In females, ovarian cells (oogonia) divide by mitosis to form
primary oocytes. The primary oocytes undergo meiosis. In female
meiosis, division of the cytoplasm is unequal, leading to the
formation of one functional gamete and three smaller cells
known as polar bodies.