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The Cell Cycle and
Mitosis: An Intro
The Cell Cycle
Every hour,
approximately 1 billion
of your cells die – but
approximately 1 billion
cells are created in a
process of cell division
called mitosis.
The cell prepares for cell
division by growing
(producing new proteins
and organelles) and by
synthesizing copies of
its DNA (the chromatin).
 This stage of the cell
cycle is called
During the first phase of mitosis, prophase,
the chromatin condenses into chromosomes
and the nuclear structure disintegrates. A
framework called the mitotic spindle forms.
Next the chromosomes line up in the
middle of the cell. This is metaphase.
During anaphase, the chromosomes
separate and are pulled to opposite
ends of the cell.
Telophase and Cytokinesis
In the last stage of mitosis, telophase, the cell
divides the cytoplasm into two portions. The
final separation of the cytoplasm into two
distinct cells is called cytokinesis.
Your Task
Your task will be to identify the structures that
will allow you to identify each phase and then
to observe mitosis in a prepared slide of an
onion root tip.