Meiosis is a distinct type of cell division where sexually reproducing organisms produce gametes like sperm and egg cells. This cell division consists of two further divisions which later results in four daughter cells. Meiosis is a type of cell division that decreases the number of chromosomes by half and produces four gamete cells. This cell division starts with a diploid parent cell which means it has two copies of each chromosome. The diploid parent cell undergoes one DNA replication and two cycles of nuclear division namely meiosis 1 and meiosis 2. The process results in four haploid daughter cells which means they consist of half chromosomes of the diploid parent cell.
Meiosis 1 is a type of cell division exclusive to germ cells and meiosis 2 is identical to the mitosis cell division. Meiosis 1 cell division includes the stages prophase 1, metaphase 1, anaphase 1 and telophase 1. Prophase 1 consists of five sub-phases namely leptotene, zygotene, pachytene, diplotene and diakinesis. The meiosis 2 includes similar stages of mitosis cell division. Before meiosis 2 begins, the cells enter a small phase known as interphase or interkinesis. Interkinesis are void of the S phase and produce chromosomes that are not duplicated. During the process of meiosis 2, the sister chromatids within the daughter cells separate from each other, forming four new haploid daughter cells.
Meiosis has two unusual aspects and the first is how the two homologous chromosomes are capable of pairing and undergoing recombination. The second aspect is the pairing of sister chromatids till they reach their disjunction.
Since meiosis has a vast and complex life cycle, the process is still poorly comprehended in the field of cell division.