Dividing pollen cell, SEM

Dividing pollen cell, SEM

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Credit: PROFESSOR T. NAGURO/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Dividing pollen cell. Coloured scanning electron micrograph of a section through a pollen mother cell from a spiderwort (Tradescantia reflexa) flower, during the anaphase (I) stage of meiosis (gamete formation) - showing: chromosomes (yellow), spindle fibres (green), cytoplasm (violet) and the cell wall (blue). During meiosis four daughter nuclei are formed from one parent nucleus after two stages of nuclear division. Meiosis occurs only in the sex cells (gametes). At anaphase (I) pairs of homologous chromosomes are separated and pulled to opposite poles of the cell by spindles. This results in two cells with half the usual number of chromosomes. The full complement is restored when two gametes fuse during fertilisation.

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