The evolution of meiosis from mitosis

Matejčić, Marija (2009) The evolution of meiosis from mitosis. Bachelor's thesis, Faculty of Science > Department of Biology.

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Abstract

The origin of meiosis was and remains to be one of the most intriguing research fields of biology. The fact that sexual reproduction, that is the main strategy by which the majority of eucaryotic organisms create offspring and persist as distinct species over time, would have been impossible without the development of meiosis keeps the continuing interest in this form of cellular division. Its similarity, as well as its higher complexity over mitosis, lead to the conclusion that meiosis had evolved from mitosis. Significant advantages of sexually reproducing organisms when they are faced with selection pressures, are mostly explained by the act of crossing-over during prophase I, which then brigs about new alelic combinations, higher intraspecial variability and the capability to survive in a changing environment. In this paper, I have tried to give an overview of the courses of the mitotic and meiotic division and their comparison. I have also tried to emphasize the differences and give a clear sequence of conclusions based on Wilkins' and Holliday's deduction - by following the causal connections between meiotic novelties, it has been concluded that the dawn of meiosis had been possible thanks to a single novelty: the pairing of homologous chromosomes along their entire length. I look into the hypothesis of recombinational DNA repair that had enabled the persistence of such a novelty, its advantages and disadvantages under selection pressures and the connection of initiative parasexual cycles to the final result - sexual reproduction. I finally conclude by proposing a few ways to test the hypothesis in the laboratory.

Item Type: Thesis (Bachelor's thesis)
Supervisor: Ivančić Baće, Ivana
Date: 2009
Number of Pages: 19
Subjects: NATURAL SCIENCES > Biology
Divisions: Faculty of Science > Department of Biology
Depositing User: Silvana Šehić
Date Deposited: 10 Dec 2014 12:36
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2016 13:59
URI: http://digre.pmf.unizg.hr/id/eprint/3494

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