AQA GCSE Biology

Revision Notes

6.1.1 Sexual & Asexual Reproduction

Mitosis & Meiosis

  • Mitosis is a type of nuclear division that gives rise to cells that are genetically identical
  • It is used for growth, repair of damaged tissues, replacement of cells and asexual reproduction
  • Meiosis is a type of nuclear division that gives rise to cells that are genetically different
  • It is used to produce gametes (sex cells)

Sexual Reproduction

  • Sexual reproduction is a process involving the fusion of the nuclei of two gametes (sex cells) to form a zygote (fertilised egg cell) and the production of offspring that are genetically different from each other
    • The gametes of animals are the sperm cells and egg cells
    • The gametes of flowering plants are the pollen cells and egg cells
  • Fertilisation is defined as the fusion of gamete nuclei, and as each gamete comes from a different parent, there is variation in the offspring
  • The formation of gametes involves meiosis

Asexual Reproduction

  • Asexual reproduction does not involve sex cells or fertilisation
  • Only one parent is required so there is no fusion of gametes and no mixing of genetic information
  • As a result, the offspring are genetically identical to the parent and to each other (clones)
  • Asexual reproduction is defined as a process resulting in genetically identical offspring from one parent
  • Only mitosis is involved in asexual reproduction

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