One of the most important actions of a cell is the process of reproduction.

This is where the centrioles come in. They are located close to the cell’s nucleus and are a tiny group of nine microtubules. Whenever there are two centrioles side by side they are typically at right angles.

They can’t be seen as part of a cells normal activities and only become visible when they are called upon to perform their main function in the division of a cell.

There are two types of reproduction that involve the centrioles: mitosis, which is asexual reproduction, and meiosis, which is sexual reproduction.

The centrioles assist the cell as it goes through the division process.

Centriole structure

When you can see centrioles they look like open barrels. Their cylindrical shape has a length of 700 nanometers, with 250 nanometers in diameter.

While they are at right angles to each other they don’t touch each other.

They are surrounded by a homogenous clear cytoplasm that is called “Centrospheres.”

Centrioles have another function

Another job that the centrioles have is in the arrangement of the organelles of the cell.

This is a priority as the cell needs good organelle arrangement to make sure that there aren’t any tumors forming or instability of the genes.

Keeping things organized also plays a part in the structural information that is passed on in cell division to the “daughter cells” and helps with a longer lifespan.

The centrioles have an influence over the microtubules that are found inside the cytoplasm.

Where are the Centrioles?

The time when centrioles are at rest is called “interphase.”

It may seem strange, but the centrioles are really invisible until the cell begins the division process.

Once the cell gets to a point of dividing, either through meiosis or mitosis, a pair of centrioles become visible from the centrosome.

The next action is the duplication of that pair and each set moves to an opposite cell side.

Centrioles Start Working

When the two pairs have moved to either side of a cell, this begins the “prophase.”

The centrioles have spindle fibers that they use to connect themselves to the chromosomes and they begin pulling them apart until the cell splits down the middle.

The “telophase” begins when the separated chromosomes have new nuclear membranes forming. Once new cell membranes are formed the “cytokinesis” process is done and everything is complete.

The new cells each have their own centriole pair, although they will once again be invisible until there is another cell division.

This process continues with daughter cells maturing and then splitting off into more daughter cells.

Fun Facts about Centrioles

  • Centrioles are derived from “spirochetes” which are bacteria with microtubules.
  • A centrioles is made up of short cylindrically shaped microtubules with nine groups of three microtubules.
  • The centrioles microtubules act as part of the cytoskeleton.
  • The centrioles also plays a part in building flagella and cilia
  • It was once thought that all animal cells required centrioles, but there are animal cells that don’t have centrioles and can still divide.
  • Even though they cannot be seen when they are in the interphase, it’s believed that they are near and outside of the nucleus.

 Interesting Facts about Biology

  • The condition where neither gene type is dominant is called “codominance”. An example of this might be in a child with AB blood type, where one parent has type A and the other has type B.
  • Some foods have nutrients that are good for the brain and body and are supposed to help to make you smarter. These are part of the “super foods” group.
  • As people age, the sense of smell seems to worsen.
  • The function of a protein depends on the type and arrangement of different amino acids along the strand of the protein.
  • There are poisons and drugs that act as enzyme inhibitors. An example of a natural enzyme inhibitor is snake venom.
  • Some traits are determined by dominant genes while other traits are determined by multiple genes.

Centrioles Quiz

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