What Enables the Copied Chromosomes to Separate During Binary Fission?

Philipp Schaetz

October 1, 2020

The genetic material of the newly-formed daughter cell must be copied from the genetic material of the parent cell. In Bacteria, this is accomplished by the segregation of the replicated chromosomes in a process called binary fission.

Binary Fission

Binary Fission is the process by which cells divide to produce two new daughter cells. Each daughter cell has the same number of chromosomes as the parent cell.

Binary fission is a process used by bacteria, algae, and protozoans. It is characterized by a simple method of cell division. This occurs in a process called binary fission.

The process of binary fission is so simple that it is easy to visualize what occurs during this process. If you place a single Escherichia coli bacterium on the surface of a petri plate, it will grow exponentially until it forms a visible colony. The colony will continue to grow until the nutrients are used up. Then, the cell will begin to divide in order to produce two new daughter cells.

During binary fission, the cell grows in size as a result of replication of the genetic material. The chromosomes replicate and then separate into two groups. Each new chromosome group is called a replicated chromosome. The replicated chromosomes then separate into two new groups as the cell divides and the new cell wall (plasma membrane) forms.

The basic steps in binary fission are as follows:

  1. The cell grows larger in size as a result of replication of the genetic material.
  2. The replicated chromosomes separate into two groups.
  3. The cell wall forms and the new membrane separates the two groups of chromosomes.
  4. Two new daughter cells are formed.

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