Difference Between Chromatin and Chromosomes


It is a structure present in DNA double helix of eukaryotes. It consists of RNA, DNA and protein. It helps in easy package into the cell nucleus, DNA replication and in the regulation of gene expression. They are composed of nucleosomes and appear throughout the cell cycle. Condensation is 50 times more than DNA double helix. The structure of Chromatin is thin, long and uncoiled fibres. It is unwound DNA. DNA is used for macromolecule synthesis.


It is the highest condensed structure of DNA double helix along with protein. They are composed of chromatin fibres and appear during cell division i.e, metaphase and anaphase. Condensation is 10,000 times more than DNA double helix. The structure of chromatin is ribbon like, thick and compact. Tightly packed DNA. DNA is not used for macromolecule synthesis. There are four types of chromosomes. They are differentiated based on the centromere position. They are telocentric, acrocentric, submetacentric, metacentric.

To make you understand how chromatin and chromosomes are different from each other, here are the some of the major differences between chromatin and chromosomes:

Difference between Chromatin and Chromosomes



Composed of nucleosomes

They are condensed Chromatin Fibers



Visualized under electron microscope

Visualised under light microscope

Thin, long, uncoiled structure

Thick, compact, ribbon like structure

Allows DNA replication

No metabolic activity shown

These were some of the important difference between chromatin and chromosomes. To know differences between other topics in Biology you can register to BYJU’S or download our app for simple and interesting content. India’s largest k-12 learning app with top notch teachers from across the nation with excellent teaching skills. Find notes, question papers for other subjects like Mathematics, Physics, Biology and various competitive exams as well. Enjoy learning with great experience. Learning is no more boring with BYJU’S.

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