What Are Chromosomes and What Are the Key Differences Between Prokaryotes and Eukaryotes?

February 15, 2024

Chromosomes are the structures that hold DNA inside the cell. They are the physical forms of genes and help to make our bodies work properly. For example, they ensure that new cells are produced at the right time to replace older ones. They also ensure that each cell receives the right genetic instructions to become a specific type of cell. Chromosomes play an important role in inherited traits, as well. For example, the number of X chromosomes in an egg or sperm determines whether the resulting offspring will be male or female. It is also important that reproductive cells such as sperm and eggs contain the correct number of chromosomes, and that they have the right structure. Changes in chromosomes can lead to many types of cancer and other diseases.

What are the key differences between prokaryotes and eukaryotes?

Eukaryotic organisms (including plants, animals, and fungi) are part of one of the three domains of life called Eukaryota. They have a nucleus enclosed in a membrane, unlike prokaryotic bacteria that do not. Eukaryotic cells also have a gel-like substance called cytoplasm and membrane-bound organelles that provide specialized functions.


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