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When you look at your family picture, have you ever wondered
why do we look like our parents? How did you have the eye color of
your father or the kind of hair that your mother has? How do these
characteristics become part of our characteristics?

During our past discussions in Biology, we have learned that sex-

ual reproduction involves two kinds of cells, the sperm cell from the
male parent and the egg cell from the female parent. The two cells
unite to befertiuzed and after fertilization; the fertilized egg will then
develop into a new organism with inherited traits from the parents.

In this chapter, we will leam further how those traits have been
transferred from the parents to the offspring
Cell Division

We have two kinds of cells in our body, the somatic cells and the gamete or sex cells. The
somatic cells are the cells that compose our body while the gametes are the cells involved in
sexual reproduction.

There are two kinds of gametes, the sperm cell that comes from me male parent and the egg
cell or ovum that comes from the female parent. These cells are important for the growth and
reproduction of organisms that is why it is important that we must learn how they are repro-

The Cell Cycle

The cell cycle is the life cycle of a cell in which
it shows the growth and development of a cell.
It involves two phases, the interphase and cell
27.1 Interphase
Interphase is considered as the preparatory stage for cell division in which materials for
the division is being made. It is where a cell spends most of its days preparing for cell divi-
sion. Interphase consists of three phases G1 phase, S phase, and G2 phase.

The G1 phase (G stands for gap) is the first phase in interphase where the primary
cell growth occurs. it is where the cell produces more cytoplasm and accumulates
the building blocks of chromosomal DNA and associated proteins that are used for
replication of organelles and DNA.

The S phase or the Synthesis phase is the second and the most important phase
in interphase because it is where the DNA is being replicated. It is also where the
centrosome is duplicated giving rise later on to the mitotic spindle fibers.

The G1 phase, also called as the “second growth“ of the cell, is the last phase of
interphase where the centrioles, organelles, and proteins are being synthesized in
preparation for cell division.

27.2 cell division

Cell division is simply the process of reproducing new cells and the division of a single
cell. When the G2 phase is finished, the cell is now ready for cvll division. Cell division has two
kinds: mitosis and meiosis.

In reality, not all cells has the regular pattern of the cell cycle in which a daughter cell
immediately enters the preparatory phases of interphase then followed by mitosis. Some
cells undergo G0 temporarily until external stimulus initiates it to G1 Other cells like the nerve
cell never or rarely divide and permanently remain in Go.

Mitosis is one kind of cell division

in which a cell prouces two ge-
netically identical daughter cells.
This kind of cell division is seen on
somatic cells or the cells in the

Cells produced by this kind of di-

vision is called as diploid cells (2N)
which means the daughter cells
have a complete set or two sets of

Chromosomes are long thread-

like bodies found inside the nu-
cleus of a cell which is primarily
made up of DNA and protein.
Mitosis has four stages: prophase, metaphase, anaphase, and telophase respectively.


The early stage of prophase starts when the chromatin of the

nucleus condenses to form the visible chromosomes. In the ani-
mal cell, the mitotic spindle fiber forms from the cytoskeleton
or the centrioles.

Then during late prophase, sometimes called prometaphase,

the nuclear membrane and the nucleolus are broken down
and chromosomes continue to condense and become clearly
visible. Chromosomes that consist of two chromatids that are
joined by a centromere pair up in the nucleus. The kinetochore,
specialized regions in the centromere, are attached to the
centromere of each chromosomes. Centromere is the region of
DNA where the sister
chromatids are tightly connected. The mitotic spindles, which
consists of microtubes and other proteins, are forming between
poles of the cell. The asters, the star-shaped structure surround-
ing the centrosome, move to the opposite sides of the nucleus.


The significant phenomenon in this stage is when

chromosomes line up to the equator of the cell forming a
metaphase plate. The kinetochores attach to the mitotic
spindle and the asters go to each pole of the cell. It is also
the longest stage of mitosis.


This is the shortest stage of mitosis. which begins when

each of the sister chromatids go to each opposite poles
producing a full-
fledged chromosome referred as daughter chromosomes.

Each of the chromosomes goes to the opposite ends of

the cell as the kinetochore microtubules shortens and the
cell elongates as
the nonkinetochore microtubules lengthens.

By the end of anaphase, the two ends of the cell have

equivalent and complete collection of chromosomes.

This is the end stage where the cell starts to split and
produce two daughter cells. Each pole of the cell starts
to form daughter nuclei as the nuclear envelope starts to
arise from the fragment of the parent cell’s nuclear enve-

The chromosomes become less condensed and the nucle-

olus reappears. After this stage is the cytokinesis in which
the production of the cytoplasm and its distribution to
each daughter cells occur. The end product of telophase
is two genetically identical daughter cells from a single


Meiosis is a kind of cell division that happens to the gametes or the sex cells.This is where
a single cell is divided to produce four gamete cells. It can also be termed as gameto-
genesis because it is the process in which the gametes, which are the egg cells and the
sperm cells, are produced.
The process in which sperm cells are produced is called as spermatogenesis and the produc-
tion of the egg cells or ovum is called as oogenesis. The cells produced by meiosis are haploid
cells (N) meaning they have half the complete set of chromosomes an organism has.

The reason why gametes only have half the set of chromosomes is that when the sperm cell
and the egg cell unite to be fertilized. the chromosomes of each gamete add up to each other,
making the fertilized egg or the zygote contain a complete set chromosomes or diploid (2N).

Compared to mitosis which only has one division, meiosis involves two divisions, the meiosis I
and meiosis ll.
Meiosis I

During the S phase in Meiosis I, the chromosomes are replicated just like in mitosis. Each of the
chromosomes consists of two identical sister chromatids attached to the centromere and the centrioles
pair and replicate. The nucleolus is still visible in this stage.

Just like in mitosis, meiosis I has four stages: prophase l, metaphase l, anaphase I, and telophase 1
respectively. This cell division results to the chromosome reduction of the daughter cells by half.
Prophase I is the longest and most complex stage of meiosis 1 because this is where the ho-
mologous chromosomes (chromosomes that carry the same kind of genes) pair up togeth-
er and line side by side to form a tetrad (two chromosomes or four chromatids) as illustrat-
ed in Figure 27.10. This process is now called as synapsis.

This is also the stage in which crossing over occurs. During crossing over. segments of
non-sister chromatids break and reattach to the other chromatids. The site in which the
crowing over occurs is called as chiasmata or chiasma. This process allows transfer of ge-
netic material and produtes variation in the offspring. Alsod uring this phase, the nuclear
envelope starts to break down. the nucleolus starts to disappear, and the centrioles move to
the opposite poles

Metaphase I is where the homologous chromosomes move to the equator of the cell with
the centromeres attached to the spindle fibers that are positioned to the opposite poles.

Anaphase I is where the homologous chromosomes separate and go to each opposite

poles of the cell. But unlike in mitosis where the sister chromatids separate, they remain
intact as the cell starts to have cleavage furrow.

Telophase I is the last stage Where the nuclear envelope starts to form around the chromo-
somes then followed by cytokinesis. At the end of meiosis 1, two daughter cells that have
half the number of chromosomes (haploid) form as the parent cell.

Meiosis II

After meiosis 1, comes the second division of the two haploi daugh-
ter cells which is meiosis II. Just like in meiosis I, it has four stages:
Prophase II, metaphase II, anaphase II, and telophaseI II, respective-
Prophase II is where the nuclear membrane breaks down together with the formation of
spindle. The difference between prophase I and prophase II is that the sister chromatids no
longer replicate,but they start to migrate to the equatorial plate

Metaphase II is where the chromosomes line together at the equator of the cell

Anaphase II is where the sister chromatids seperate and moves to the opposite poles

Telophase II is the last stage where a new nuclear envelope forms around the chromo-
somes together with the reappearance of the nucleus and the division of the cytoplasm.

At the end of meiosis II there would be four haploid daughter cells formed. In oogenesis,
only one of the daughter cells will be fully grown to be an ovum and the three will eventu-
ally disintegrate

1.What are the differences of mitosis and meiosis?

2,Explain breifly the different stages of mitosis?

3.Why are synapsis and chiasmata important in meiosis I?

4.What is tetrad?
Mendelian Genetics

Getting Started

Gregor Johann Mendel,an Austrian monk, was born on July 22, 1822 in Heinzendorf
bei Odrau, Austria (now Czech Republic). He was a son of a peasant farmer then later on
studied Theology and was ordained as an Augustinian monk of St. Thomas’ Abbey in Brn,
Czech Republic

He went to the university of Vienna where he studied botany and learned the scientific
method. It was in their monastery’s garden where he performed his experiments on gar-
den peas

For eight years, he worked on the puure lines of pea plants where he studied about the
seven traits shown in Table 28.1
Mendel chose garden peas because the variation or contrasting forms were evident in every
species and these plants have big number of offsprings at a time. Pea plants have short life
cycle making it possible to observe many generation of plants and they are easy to manage.

Getting informed

Before we can discuss about Mendelian genetics. we must know first the definition of ge-
netics and the different terms used in genetics

Genetics is a branch of biology that studies heredity and variation of organisms. Chromo-
somes have a major role in the heredity if organisms because they contain genes. A gene is a
unit of the DNA containing codes of the characteristics of traits of an organism. The entire set of
genes an organsim contain is called as genome.

There are always two factors that cause a certain trait to appear. These factors are termed as
genes. The two genes come from each parents of the offspring.

In one of the experiments of Mendel, he crossed a tall peaplant and a short pea plant which
he called as the first parental generation (P1). When the P1 generation was crossed together
and formed pods, Mendel gathered the pods and planted its seeds. When he seeds matured,
they are called as the first filial generation (F1)

Mendel observed that all the plants in the F1 generation were tall. He concluded that the
short characteristics were maskedby the tall characteristic. He called the tall characteristic
dominant trait because that trait appeared in the appearance of the offsprings and the short
trait was called recessive trait because it was not expressed in the appearance of the offsprings.

He proceeded with his experiment and this time, he allowed the F1 to self-pollinate and plant
its seeds afterwards. The seeds that grew into plants were called as the second filial generation
(F2) and to his surprise, the short characteristics appeared again in the offsprings.

He repeated the same experiments and got the same results. And because of these experi-
ments, he had formulated the following principles:

1. Principle of Dominance and Recessiveness - There is a trait that will cover up the other
trait and inhibits it to appear. Like in Mendel’s experiment, the short characteristic in
the pea plant is not shown in the F1 generation because the tall chacteristic dominat-
ed the short characteristic.
Principle of Segregation and Independent Assortment - Whene gametogenesis oc-
curs in meiosis, the genes (the code for a trait) of a parent becomes seperated so that
gametes (sperm cells or egg cells) recieve only one kind of gene
The genetic patterns that follow these genetic principles are now called as Mendelian genetics.

The factors that Mendel identified in his experiments were now known as genes or the genetic codes for a
certain traits that is found in the chromosomes of a cell.

One of the forms a gene may have for a specific trait is called as an allele and according to the principle of
unit character, “every trait is controlled by two alleles.” For example, genes for height: tall and short, An allele
can be dominant or recessive. In the case for the gene for height, the tall allele is dominant over the short allele
which results to the hiding of the appearance of the recessive allele and the expression of the dominant allele.
The recessive allele can only be expressed if the two alleles of a certain gene are both recessive.

An individual that contain identical alleles for a particular gene is calles as homozygous or pure. If the P1
generation of a pea plant is purely tall for the continuous generations, that pea plant is called as homozygous
dominant (TT). and if a pea plant have two alleles for shortness, it is called homozygous recessive (tt)

However, an individual that has different kinds of allele for a specific trait is called as heterozygous (Tt). A
heterozygous individual is called a hybris because it has two different alleles for the same trait.

The symbols TT, tt, and Tt represent the genetic makeup of an individual also known as genotype, and the
physical trait of an organism that is expressed in its appearance is called as its phenotype (ex: TT=genotype,
homozygous tall=phenotype)

These alleles are located in a particular location on a pair of homologous chromosomes. During meiosis I,
the homologous chromosomes seperate and the alleles are passed on to the different gametes or sex cells that
are explaines in the principle of segregation.

Text Crosses

The experiment taht Gregor Mendel made on the height of the garden peas is an example of
a monohybrid cross. It is a type of test cross involving a sinle trait that is determined by a single
gene with two alleles.


Frist parental generation (P1) = TT x tt

TT = Homozygous tall plant

tt = Homozygous short plant

Gamets of P1 (G1)

TT = T x T
tt = t x t
First filial generation (F1)=Tt
Second parental generation (P2)=Tt × Tt
or First filial (F1) generation
TT = Heterozygous tall plant
Tt = Heterozygous tall plant

Gametes of P2 (G2)
Tt = T × t
Tt = T × t

Second filial generation (F2)

TT = Homozygous tall plant
Tt = Heterozygous tall plant
Tt = Heterozygous tall plant
tt = Homozygous short plant

Genotypic ratio: 1 TT: 2 Tt: 1 tt

Phenotypic ratio: 3 Tall: 1 short

The Punnett Square

The Punnett square is a graphic tool used to determine the probability of the
combinations of genotypes that the offspring can have with the use of the genotypes
of their parents. It was introduced by Reginald Crundall Punnet during the early

The Punnett square is done by writing down the alleles of the genes of each
parent on the top or the left side of the square that is divided by four. Each of
the squares shows the combination of the alleles of the specific trait that is being

In this example, a test/cross between a homozygous tall plant (TT) and a ho-
mozygous short plant (tt). (See Figure 28.2.) The alleles of the homozygous
tall plant are written on the left side of the squares and the alleles of homo-
zygous short plant are written at the topside of the square.

The result of this Punnett square shows that the offsprings of this mono-
hybrid test cross are 4 out of 4 or 100% tall heterozygous plants. The genotyp-
ic ratio of the offsprings is 4 Tt :4 Tt and the phenotypic ratio is 4:4 or all