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Difference Between Chromosome and Chromatid

Chromosome vs. Chromatid
Chromosomes and chromatids can often be confused for one another. The two are identical, and are terms used to refer to the same thing at different stages of a cell’s reproduction. When a cell undergoes mitosis, chromosomes duplicate when the cells do, as every cell needs to contain a chromosome. While the cells are still attached and two chromosomes have been developed they are called chromatids. Once the cell has split there are two cells, each with one chromosome again, and this process of chromatids turning into chromosomes continues. Both carry the same information and are key in cellular reproduction

A chromosome is a DNA and protein found in cells made up of hundreds of thousands of nucleotides. Chromosomes take different characteristics and appearances based on the type of organism they are making up. Eukaryotes, which are plants and animals, have linear chromosomes that can be found in the nucleus of the cell. Prokaryotes, which are bacterial organisms, have single circular chromosomes that are found in the endosymbiotic bacterium of the cells. Regardless of what type of organism they are in, chromosomes carry the DNA for that particular organism. Consequently all the reproductive means for that organism are in the cells in addition to those necessary to survive. Chromosomes are responsible for creating the individual and making you the person that you are today.
A chromatid is actually the sister to a chromosome. An exact replica of a chromosome, a chromatid can be found next to chromosomes, like a twin. It is exactly a half of a duplicated chromosome. This occurs when the cell is attempting to undergo mitosis or meiosis and duplicating itself; the same occurs within the cell, making two chromosomes. The twins are considered chromatids until they are not joined at their centromeres. A chromatid is important in the process of mitosis, since without its existence there would be no DNA protein in the new cell being created. The goal is to create two fully functioning and reproducing cells, a chromatid is the start of that process.

Summary

1. A chromosome is a single form of DNA and protein that lives within a cell. A chromatid is the sister and exact replica of a chromosome that is created when the cell undergoes mitosis or meiosis.
2. A chromosome carries the reproductive information for a single cell. A chromatid will also carry that same information, however it has not become its own cell yet.
3. Chromosomes are found in different locations of a cell depending on the organism. In eukaryotes they are in the nucleus and in prokaryotes they are in the endosymbiotic bacterium of the cell.
4. Chromosomes make the organism and give them their characteristics, chromatids enable these cells to replicate.


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