Let’s see in detail how this two cellular division differs from each other:
- Cell division:
- Daughter cell number:
Mitosis involves only one division that takes place in the telophase phase, while in Meiosis the division occur twice the time and it takes place in Telophase I and Telophase II.
Mitosis division involves the production of two daughter cells (diploid) containing the same type of chromosomes of the parental cell. No recombination occurs.
Meiosis division involves the production of four daughter cells (haploid) containing a different combination of chromosomes (¼) from the parental cell. This is the result of the random segregation of the chromosomes that take place during the phase of crossing over.
In mitosis, the time for the cellular division is less compared to meiosis due to the fact that this cellular division is mainly composed of five stages. In meiosis, the cell takes longer to split, because it involved in two cycles of division, where the phase of Prophase I is made of five stages: leptotene, zygotene, pachytene, diplotene, and diakinesis.
In mitosis, the number of chromosomes remains the same, while in meiosis is reduced in half for then be joined with the same amount of chromosome from the opposite gamete. Also in meiosis, the chromosome start to pair up during the zygotene phase of Prophase I (Diffen.com, 2018) while in mitosis the pairing does not occur.
In mitosis five main stages are involved: prophase, metaphase, anaphase, telophase and cytokinesis. Meiosis, in the other hand, has ten stages divided into two cycles: in Prophase I, Metaphase I, Anaphase I, Telophase I and Cytokinesis ( in Meiosis I); Prophase II, Metaphase II, Anaphase II, Telophase II and Cytokinesis II (in Meiosis II).
Prophase stage, in mitosis, is simple and normally takes few hours, while, in meiosis; this stage is quite complicated and takes normally few days.
Cytokinesis, in mitosis, takes place towards the end part of Telophase while in meiosis it takes place both on Telophase I and in Telophase II.
In summary in meiosis, chromosome pairs come together but then are separate after crossing over occurs, resulting in mixing of the genetic information between the chromosomes pairs. This cellular division has two rounds of genetic separation and cellular division resulting into four non-identical daughter cells, with half of the number of chromosomes (haploid). That is why it only occurs in gamete cells where both chromosomes from the mother and the father are mixed together to create a unique individual (sexual reproduction).
In mitosis, the chromosomes do not pair up with each other and only one genetic separation occurs. This results in two identical daughter cells from the parent cell with the same number of chromosomes and genotype (diploid). That why it only occurs around the body for growth and repair purposes (asexual reproduction).
Although I mention the main differences between these cellular divisions, the both have similarities. Both have a growth period called interphase, where the cell replicates its genetic material in preparation for the following stages. They both end with the division of the cytoplasm that produces individual cells.