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Meiosis, independent assortment

Eukaryotic cells can divide by mitosis or meiosis. In humans, mitosis produces new cells for growth and repair; meiosis produces sex cells (gametes) called sperm and eggs.
Although mutations are the ultimate source of genetic variability, both meiosis and sexual reproduction also can contribute to new genetic combinations in offspring.

How do both meiosis and sexual reproduction (fertilization) produce offspring that differ genetically from the parents? Be sure to talk about the two specific steps in meiosis that increase variability as well as the process of fertilization.

Solution Preview

Eukaryotic cells can divide by mitosis or meiosis. In humans, mitosis produces new cells for growth and repair; meiosis produces sex cells (gametes) called sperm and eggs.
Although mutations are the ultimate source of genetic variability, both meiosis and sexual reproduction also can contribute to new genetic combinations in offspring.
How do both meiosis and sexual reproduction (fertilization) produce offspring that differ genetically from the parents? Be sure to talk about the two specific steps in meiosis that increase variability as well as the process of fertilization.

Meiosis produce offspring that differ genetically from the parents by several steps:
Let look at the stage of meiosis first

Interphase- is the step where chromosomes duplicate. This stage is where each chromosome consists of two genetically identical sister chromatids attached together.

Prophase I is the most complex phase of meiosis and take the longest. In this stage, the chromatin coils up and chromosome becomes visible ...

Solution Summary

Meiosis is a type of cell division that produces haploid gametes in diploid organisms. Many stages of meiosis closely resemble corresponding stages of mitosis. Meiosis is followed by two consecutive cell divisions called meiosis I and meiosis II and these result in four daughter cells with each single haploid set of chromosomes. Meiosis produces daughter cells with only half as many chromosomes as the parent cell. The stages that led to the genetic variation in the offspring happen during the crossing over event when homologous chromosome exchange genetic regions and when there is independent arrangement of homologous chromosomes during metaphase I of meiosis.

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