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Prophase - illustration

A cell in prophase, near the start of mitosis: In the nucleus, chromosomes condense and become visible. In the cytoplasm, the spindle forms. Mitosis is responsible for growth and development, as well as for replacing injured or worn out cells throughout the body. For simplicity, mitosis is illustrated here with only six chromosomes.

Illustration courtesy of Judith Stoffer and NIGMS (National Institute of General Medical Sciences).



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