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Meiosis Animation Link

(and another)
What is Meiosis?
Produces 4 daughter cells that have half the
number of chromosomes as the parent cell.
2N N

Gametes (sperm and eggs) are haploid.

Allows eukaryotic organisms to reproduce sexually
Why have sexual reproduction?

Shuffling of alleles between parents and offspring

leads to new combinations = variation. Variation is
best in an ever-changing environment.
Genes are on Chromosomes
Summary of the Phases of
Use 2 cell divisions:
Meiosis 1. First separate the
Meiosis 2. Then separate the
2 chromatids.
Meiosis 1
In the first meiotic division, the
number of cells is doubled but the
number of chromosomes is not. This
results in 1/2 as many chromosomes
per cell.

Two important events in meiosis 1:

crossing over in prophase
the pairing of homologues in
Meiosis 1
Prophase I
Homologous chromosomes
become paired.
Crossing-over occurs between
homologous chromosomes.
Meiosis 1

Metaphase I
Homologous pairs become
aligned in the center of
the cell.
Meiosis 1
Anaphase I
Homologous chromosomes
Homologous Chromosomes
Diploid organisms have two copies of each
chromosome (except the sex
chromosomes). Each pair of chromosomes
is homologous. For example, the two #7
chromosomes are homologous. The
homologue to the #3 chromosome would
be the other #3 chromosome.
Meiosis 1
Telophase I
This stage is absent in some
The nuclear membrane
The chromosomes uncoil.
The spindle apparatus
breaks down.
The cell divides into two.
Meiosis 1
Interkinesis is similar to
interphase except DNA
synthesis does not occur.

Time between Meiosis I &

Meiosis II
Result of Meiosis 1
Go from 1 cell to 2 cells. Each
daughter cell contains 1 copy of
each chromosome: they are
haploid, with the chromosomes
still having 2 chromatids each.
For humans: start with one cell
containing 46 chromosomes (23
pairs) to 2 cells containing 23
As a result of crossing over,
each chromosome is the mixture
of the original homologues.
Meiosis 2
Meiosis 2 is just like mitosis
No replication of DNA between
meiosis 1 and meiosis 2.
Chromosomes line up
individually on the equator of
the spindle at metaphase.
At anaphase the centromeres
divide, splitting the 2
The one-chromatid
chromosomes are pulled to
opposite poles.
Summary of Meiosis
2 cell divisions.
Start with 2 copies of each chromosome
(homologues), each with 2 chromatids.
In meiosis 1, crossing over in prophase
mixes alleles between the homologues.
In metaphase of meiosis 1, homologues
pair up, and in anaphase the homologues
are separated into 2 cells.
Meiosis 2 is just like mitosis. The
centromeres divide in anaphase, giving rise
to a total of 4 cells, each with 1 copy of
each chromosome, and each chromosome
with only 1 chromatid.
Life Cycles

Meiosis converts a diploid cell into haploid cells.

Fertilization combines the 2 haploid gamete cells
(sperm and egg) back into a diploid cell called a zygote
Eukaryotes alternate between diploid and haploid
stages. This is called the life cycle of the organism.
Gamete Formation in Animals
Differences between male and female
In males, all 4 products of meiosis
develop into sperm cells. They lose
most of their cytoplasm, remodel their
cell shape, and grow a long flagellum

In females, the cell divisions of meiosis

are asymmetric: most of the cytoplasm
goes into 1 of the 4 meiotic products,
which becomes the egg.
The other 3 meiotic cells are small
polar bodies, which degenerate.