Exploration of the Mitosis & Its Intricate Parts

Published: 2021-07-10 20:45:05
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In this lab we explored the Mitosis and its intricate parts. To understand the process even further we used models of Mitosis and observed cells on both a premade and student made slide through the use of a Light Microscope. After viewing the slides the majority of the cells appeared to be in interphase and the least amount appeared to be in prophase. This lab is essential to understanding how cell division works and what it looks like.
The cell cycle consists of G0, G1, S, G2, and M phase. During G0, the cell is in a quiescent state, waiting for G1 to begin. During G1, the growth phase is started, this is when the cell begins to grow in size, produce mRNA, and synthesize proteins. G1 makes sure that the cell is prepared for synthesis. The S phase, or synthesis phase, is when the DNA is replicated. When synthesis is complete, all of the chromosomes have been replicated. During this phase, the amount of DNA in the cell has essentially doubled. During G2 the cell will continue to grow and make certain that it has all the necessary proteins needed for Mitosis. During the M phase, Mitosis phase, sister chromatids are separated forming two identical daughter cells.Mitosis is a process where a single cell divides into two identical daughter cells. The major purpose of mitosis is for growth and to replace worn out cells. Right outside of the nucleus are two centrosomes and these centrosomes have the centrioles, which play a critical role in cell division. During prophase, the chromosome condenses into structures that look like the letter X. The condensed chromosome will make division easier. At the end of prophase, but also at the beginning of metaphase, called prometaphase, the nuclear membrane begins to dissolve. The mitotic spindle, made up of microtubules, extends across the cell between the centrioles as they move towards opposite poles of the cell. Then, during metaphase, the chromosomes line up along the metaphase plate.
During this phase the centrioles should be on the opposite poles. The mitotic fibers connect to the sister chromatids. Anaphase is next, here the chromosomes pulled apart by the mitotic spindles. During telophase the nucleus starts to form and the chromosome begin to return to its regular form. During cytokinesis the cell then cleves in the middle to form two separate daughter cells with each containing a full set of chromosomes within a nucleus.
Through this lab we should be able to identify the different stages of mitosis and the cell cycle. In this lab we were able to continue working on proper control of the Light Microscope, as well as executing conventional slide generating techniques. We also should have learned the basics of why cells need to go through division. If we observe onion root tip slides under a microscope, then the data will show the time spent in mitosis is less than time spent in interphase.
Materials & Methods
Materials needed for the mitosis section included: models of phases of mitosis, prepared Onion Allium Root Tips slides, a germinating Onion Bulb, a Compound Light Microscope, an alcohol burner, Toluidine Blue Stain, Paper towels, glass slides, 1N HCl fixative, and cover slips. Materials for the meiosis prep included: Sordaria + strain plate, Sordaria – strain plate, a sterile Petri Dish with agar, an alcohol burner, an inoculation loop, and alcohol. There were no deviations from protocol.
From the mitosis arrangement figure, it was rather hard to discern between telophase and cytokinesis. Our teacher aid guided us in the direction to attain the proper order of mitosis. Before the cell enters mitosis and is in interphase the cell duplicates organelles and DNA in preparation for division. The nuclear membrane dissolves during prometaphase and it reappears during telophase. The movement of chromosomes is through the aid microtubules and centrioles. The different phases of mitosis are each so intricate and it is easy to get lost in the gray areas in between the phases, what distinguishes each phase from the others is the state of the chromosomes. Finding the cells in the different phases in the Onion Root Tip prepared Sides through the Light Microscope was difficult so our teacher aid adjusted it. Interphase appeared to be most prevalent in the meristem. Of the hundred cells counted during Activity 1B, in the meristem 42 were in interphase, 20 were in prophase, 11 were in metaphase, nine were in anaphase, and 18 were in telophase. While counting a representative cell from each phase was drawn as seen in the below picture. For the Preparation of the Onion Root Tip Slides the 1N HCI that was added to the aid in the breakdown the nuclear envelope of the cell, whereas the stain was allowed to highlight the cell wall and the DNA which were key components of determining which phase the cells were in. We were instructed to number 200 onion root cells and determine which phase of mitosis they were in. Of the 200: 87 were in interphase, 17 were in prophase, 21 were in metaphase, 41 were in anaphase, and 35 were in telophase. The percents were calculated below
Mitosis is responsible for growth, so by examining onion tips we were able to see the cell division in fruition. A cell spends most of its time in interphase. The cell must grow, replicate organelles, and synthesize proteins and DNA. That is the reasoning behind why so many of the cells were observed in interphase. Preparation for the division is relatively longer than the division itself. Interphase is when a cell begins the process of cell growth, this phase is also when synthesis of DNA occurs. During prophase the DNA condenses into X-like structures, called chromosomes. This allows ease during in division. Metaphase is the phase when the chromosomes are lined up in the middle of the cell. Anaphase is when the mitotic spindle fibers pull them apart. Telophase is when the nucleic envelope is formed and the cell is divided into two identical daughter cells.
Our hypothesis was supported by the data, however it is impossible to be certain without actually timing how long each part takes. What is definite, however is that of 200 cells observed 43.5% of the cells were in interphase. Based off that data it would be supported to say that interphase is the longest phase of the cell cycle.

1. Purdue Online Writing Lab. General Writing FAQs. Retrieved from https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/general_writing/general_writing_faqs.html
2. “Online Onion Root Tips.” BioMath: Trigonometric Applications, www.biology.arizona.edu/cell_bio/activities/cell_cycle/cell_cycle.html.
3. Britannica, The Editors of Encyclopaedia. “Mitosis.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 26 Apr. 2018, www.britannica.com/science/mitosis

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