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cell division

The process by which a cell divides into two new daughter cells (p. 127).


Threadlike structure within the nucleus containing the genetic information that is passed from one generation of cells to the next; a typical human body cell has 46 of these (p. 126).


One of two identical "sister" parts of a duplicated chromosome (p. 128).


Area where the chromatids of a chromosome are attached to one another; forms a narrow "waist" (p. 128).

cell cycle

The series of events that cells go through as they grow and divide (p. 129).


Period of the cell cycle between cell divisions (p. 129).

G1 phase

A period during interphase in which cells do most of their growing--increasing in size and synthesizing new proteins and organelles (p. 129).

S phase

Period of time during interphase in which chromosomes are replicated and the synthesis of DNA takes place (p. 129).

G2 phase

Period of time during interphase--usually the shortest--during which many of the organelles and molecules required for cell division are produced (p. 129).

M phase

This part of the cell cycle is divided into four phases: prophase, metaphase, anaphase, and telophase (p. 129).


During this phase of mitosis the chromosomes become visible, the nucleolus disappears, and the nuclear envelope breaks down (p. 130).


A fanlike microtubule structure that helps to separate the chromosomes (p. 130-131).


During this phase of mitosis the chromosomes line up across the center of the cell (p. 131).


During this phase of mitosis the centromeres split, allowing the chromatids to be pulled to opposite sides of the cell (p. 131).


During this phase of mitosis the chromosomes unwind to form chromatin, a nuclear envelope re-forms around the chromosomes, and a nucleolus becomes visible in each daughter nucleus (p. 131).


The division of the cytoplasm itself; in animal cells the cell membrane is drawn inward to pinch the cytoplasm into two parts while in plants a cell plate forms between the daughter nuclei (p. 129-132).


Term used to refer to chromosomes that each have a corresponding chromosome from the opposite-sex parent (p. 136).


A mnemonic (memory aid) that can be used to remember the stages of the cell cycle: Interphase, Prophase, Metaphase, Anaphase, Telophase (p. 130-131).


The normal number of chromosomes in a typical cell of the human body.


Clouds of cytoplasmic material from which spindle microtubules emerge; in animals these contain centrioles. These are also known as microtubule-organizing centers (p. 131).


A protein structure on each chromatid located at the centromere region to which spindle microtubules attach (p. 130-131)

cell plate

The precursor of a new plant cell wall that forms during cell division and divides a cell into two (p.132).

cleavage furrow

A shallow groove in the surface of an animal cell; the first sign of cleavage (cytokinesis) (p. 132).

metaphase plate

An imaginary plane equidistant between the two poles of the spindle along which the centromeres of the chromosomes line up during metaphase (p. 131).

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