Biology Education

Difference between Cytokinesis in Plant and Animal Cells

Main Difference

The process of cytokinesis is defined as the division of cytoplasm to form two different daughter cells after the process of mitosis has taken place. Now the main difference between cytokinesis in plant and animal cell is, plant cells have a cell wall that needs to be split while animals do not have any cell wall. In animal cell, a cleavage is formed first of all in the middle of the cell that has to be divided, the cleavage deepens until it meets the membrane and then eventually cell divides. While in plant cells, a row of vesicles develop during cytokinesis.


Cytokinesis In Plant Cell

cytokinesis-in-plant-cellPlant cell have a rigid cell wall unlike animal cell. It cannot constrict like a plasma membrane. So, in case of a plant cell the golgi vesicles develop in the equatorial plane, theses vesicles fuse together until a plate is formed. This cell plate is continuous. The combination of cell plate and vesicles formed, contains all the elements of plasma membrane and cell wall. Cleavage cytokinesis occurs only in the lower plants and the higher plants carry out this process by cell plate formation. The cell plate is formed during telophase, it is grown laterally that is why it is described as centrifugal.


Cytokinesis In Animal Cell

cytokinesis-in-animal-cellAnimal cell has a plasma membrane. A cleavage is formed in the middle of the cell and then this furrow deepens until it meets the membrane. When the membrane fuses, the cell completely divides, forming two daughter cells. This cleavage formed is controlled by cytoskeleton elements which are responsible for pulling the plasma membrane inwards. The cytoskeleton is composed of actin and myosin. The cleavage deepens from periphery to the center and that is why it is known as centripetal.

Key Differences

  • A mid body is absent in plant cell cytokinesis but present in animal cell cytokinesis.
  • In plant cell cytokinesis, division occurs by cell plate formation while in animal cell cytokinesis, complete cleavage occurs.
  • Cytoskeleton elements are actively involved in animal cell cytokinesis but not in plant cell cytokines.
  • Cytokinesis in animal cell is centripetal and it is centrifugal in case of plant cell.
  • A row of vesicles is not formed in animal cell but it is formed in plant cell.
  • In plant cell, wall formation is present. Wall formation is absent in animal cell during cytokinesis.
  • In ¬†animal cell, spindle degenerates during cytokinesis.

Video Explanation