Difference Between Sexual Reproduction and Asexual Reproduction

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: October 05, 2022

       

Difference Between Sexual Reproduction and Asexual Reproduction Difference Between Sexual Reproduction and Asexual Reproduction

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Introduction

According to research, Humans, animals, plants, algae, fungi, and other microbes, for example, reproduce as a natural rule, a method of guaranteeing the species' existence, and in the framework of evolution. Sexual and asexual reproduction are the two major categories of reproduction.

Now, each has its own set of benefits and drawbacks. Vertebrates, such as humans, rely solely on sexual reproduction to reproduce. Asexual reproduction is used by many lower creatures, such as amoeba.

Sexual Reproduction vs Asexual Reproduction

Now, Sexual reproduction is a type of reproduction in which one or more organisms or individuals are involved. Following that, the gametes unite, resulting in progeny. Furthermore, the progeny has distinct personalities. Sexual organs are found in both male and female species. As a result, when male and female organisms reproduce, their sexual organs come into touch to complete the process.

Also, Asexual reproduction is the type of reproduction in which only one organism is involved. As a result of this, the gametes are not fused throughout the procedure. Then, the children will look exactly like their parents. You'll also observe that asexual reproduction encompasses a wide range of techniques. Binary fission, for example, occurs when a cell divides in half and produces a clone of the parent. Budding, fragmentation, parthenogenesis, and other processes are also present (Difference Between Sexual And Asexual Reproduction, n.d.).

Difference Between Sexual and Asexual Reproduction in Tabular Form

Table: Sexual Reproduction vs Asexual Reproduction
Parameters of Comparison
Sexual Reproduction
Asexual Reproduction
The meaning
So, it is a type of reproduction in which just one or two organisms or individuals are involved.
It refers to a type of reproduction in which just one organism is involved.
The organisms involved
Two parents are required.
One parent is required.
The gamete
The creation of gametes takes place.
Gamete formation doesn’t take place.
The zygote
A zygote is formed by the fusing of gametes.
The zygote isn't formed.
Found in
All vertebrates and higher invertebrates.
Lower organisms.
The inheritance
Both parents' qualities are passed down to the offspring.
One parent's characteristics are passed down to the offspring.
Cell division
Cell division happens during meiosis and mitosis.
Only mitosis is the sort of cell division that happens.

What is Sexual Reproduction?

Now, Sexual reproduction is a natural mode of reproduction in humans, animals, and the vast majority of plants. When compared to asexual reproduction, this method of reproduction is more complex and time-consuming. Furthermore, sexual reproduction provides the benefit of variation, because each offspring is unique. A series of events are involved in sexual reproduction. Pre-fertilization, Fertilization, and Post-fertilization are the three stages of the process.

Pre-Fertilization

The events leading up to fertilization are included in this stage. The two processes that occur at this stage are gamete formation (gametogenesis) and gamete transfer. The Gametes are sex cells that are naturally haploid (23 chromosomes) and distinct in males and females.

The male gamete is known as sperm, whereas the female gamete is known as ovum or egg. These gametes originate within unique structures in every creature. Male gametes must be delivered to female gametes for fertilization since female gametes are immobile. Pollination is used to perform pre-fertilization in plants. Sexual intercourse is how unisexual animals transmit gametes.

Fertilization

Now, Fertilization, also known as syngamy, is the process by which haploid male and female gametes encounter and combine to generate a zygote. External fertilization takes place outside the body, whereas internal fertilization takes place inside the body.

Post Fertilization

Now, Fertilization results in the creation of a diploid zygote. The zygote eventually divides and develops into an embryo by mitotic division. Also, Embryogenesis is the name given to this process. During development, cells differentiate and change in response to their environment. The organism and its life cycle have an impact on zygote development.

Depending on whether the zygote grows outside or inside the body, animals are classed as oviparous or viviparous. In angiosperms, the zygote matures into the ovary, which then matures into fruit, while the ovules mature into seeds.

External Fertilization

External fertilization occurs when fertilization occurs outside of the animal's body. Most aquatic creatures, such as fish and frogs, use external fertilization. Because most fertilized eggs are washed away by water or eaten by predators, this approach requires a high number of eggs to be fertilized. A large number of eggs ensures that some of the progeny will survive.

Internal Fertilization

Internal fertilization occurs when fertilization occurs within the animal's body. The majority of terrestrial animals have internal fertilization. Internal fertilization, unlike external fertilization, does not necessitate the production of a significant number of eggs.

Also, in eukaryotes, diploid mother cells divide to form haploid cells known as gametes through a process called meiosis, which involves genetic recombination. The homologous chromosomes are paired together so that their DNA sequences are aligned, and then genetic information is exchanged between them.

Now, after two rounds of cell division, four haploid cells are produced, each with half the number of chromosomes as the parent cell, but with the parental chromosomes' genetic material recombined. Fertilization is the process where two haploid gametes join to form a single diploid cell known as a zygote. Both gametes' genetic material is combined in the zygote. A multi diploid phase or generation is produced by multiple cell divisions with no difference in the frequency of chromosomes.

Each cell in human reproduction has 46 chromosomes in 23 pairs. Meiosis in the parents' gonads results in gametes with just 23 chromosomes, which are genetic recombinants of the parental chromosomes' DNA sequences. Each cell of the resultant child will contain 23 chromosomes from each parent, for a total of 46, when the nuclei of the gametes come together to create a fertilized egg or zygote.

Now, only in plants, the diploid sporophyte produces spores by meiosis, which germinate and subsequently divide by mitosis to become the gametophyte, a haploid multicellular phase that produces gametes directly through mitosis. Moreover, the Alternation of generations refers to a life cycle in which two multicellular phases, the sexual haploid gametophyte, and the asexual diploid sporophyte, alternate.

Sexual reproduction's evolution is thought to be paradoxical, because asexual reproduction should be able to exceed it because every young organism formed can bear its own offspring. This means that an asexual population has the ability to grow at a faster rate with each generation. This 50% cost is a fitness disadvantage of sexual reproduction. This expense, as well as the fact that every creature can only pass on 50% of its genes to its progeny, make up the two-fold cost of sex. Sexual reproduction has the distinct advantage of preventing the build-up of genetic mutations (Sexual reproduction, n.d.).

What is Asexual Reproduction?

Now, Asexual reproduction is a type of reproduction in which a single parent produces a new progeny. The new persons created are genetically and physically identical to their parents, i.e., they are clones.

Both multicellular and unicellular species exhibit asexual reproduction. There will be no gamete fusion, and the number of chromosomes will not alter as a result of this procedure. Except a few circumstances where a rare mutation may occur, it will inherit the same genes as the parent.

The following are the major characteristics of asexual reproduction:

  • There is a single parent involved.
  • There is no fertilization of gamete formation.
  • This process of reproduction takes place in a relatively short amount of time.
  • The creatures reproduce and expand at a rapid rate.
  • Genetically, the offspring are similar.

Binary Fission

Now, the word "fission" literally means "to divide." The parent cell divides into two cells during binary fission. The Diverse creatures have different cell division patterns, with some being directed and others being non-directional. Also, Binary fission is seen in amoeba and euglena.

So basically, it is one of the most straightforward methods of asexual reproduction. The parent cell divides into two daughter cells, each with a nucleus that is genetically identical to the parent nucleus. The cytoplasm also splits, resulting in two daughter cells of equal size. Then, the process is repeated, and the offspring cells continue to develop and divide.

Fragmentation

Organisms like spirogyra and planaria use fragmentation as another mechanism of asexual reproduction. The parent body fragments into numerous pieces, each of which grows into a new creature. 

Regeneration

The ability to produce a new organism from a lost body part is known as regeneration. When a lizard loses its tail, for example, a new tail sprout. This is due to the organism's specialized cells' ability to differentiate and grow into a new person. Hydra and planaria are examples of organisms that regenerate.

Budding

Budding is the process of creating a person from the buds that grow on the parent body. Hydra is a budding organism that reproduces itself. The parent organism provides nutrients and shelter to the bud, which then detaches once fully grown.

Vegetative Propagation

Plants reproduce asexually via their vegetative elements, such as leaves, roots, stems, and buds. This process is known as vegetative propagation. Potato tubers, runners/stolons, onion bulbs, and other vegetative propagated plants are examples.

Spore Formation

Also, another method of asexual reproduction is spore generation. In unfavourable conditions, the organism generates sporangium, which are sac-like structures that carry spores. When the conditions are right, the sporangium bursts open, releasing spores that germinate and produce new creatures.

A single cell is divided to produce progeny in asexual reproduction. In multicellular organisms, the simple cell-by-cell division is not conceivable. The majority of multicellular creatures have a complicated body structure. Tissues, organs, and organ systems are examples of higher-level organizations. As a result, they require a unique way of reproduction.

Advantages

The following are some of the benefits of asexual reproduction:

  • It is not necessary to have a companion.
  • Reproduction is a quick procedure.
  • In a short amount of time, a large number of creatures can be created.
  • Positive genetic impacts are passed down from generation to generation.
  • It can be found in a variety of settings.

Disadvantages

The following are the significant drawbacks of asexual reproduction:

  • There isn't enough variety. Because the offspring are genetically identical to their parents, they are more prone to the same diseases and nutritional inadequacies. All of the unfavourable mutations are passed down over generations.
  • The variety among the species is limited because just one creature is engaged.
  • They are unable to adjust to changes in their surroundings.
  • A single environmental shift would be enough to wipe out the entire species.

Some examples

Asexual reproduction can be seen in the following ways:

  • Bacterium divides into two cells, each with its nucleus, in a process known as binary fission.
  • Mud worms, often known as blackworms, reproduce via fragmentation.
  • Budding is how hydras reproduce.
  • Copperheads, for example, go through parthenogenesis.
  • Sugarcane can be propagated through vegetative means (Asexual Reproduction, n.d.).

Main Differences Between Sexual Reproduction and Asexual Reproduction In Points

Following are the differences between sexual and asexual reproduction in brief:

  • The key distinction between sexual and asexual reproduction is that sexual reproduction necessitates the participation of two parents, at least in the early stages of the reproductive process.
  • Only one parent is required in the case of asexual reproduction.
  • Sexual reproduction, on the other hand, necessitates the cooperation of two sets of genes, resulting in an endless number of variations among children. As a result, asexually reproduced animals have a higher potential for adaptation to changing environments and superior defines mechanisms than sexually reproduced ones.
  • Plants and other living entities that do not move around benefit from asexual reproduction. They are unable to find mates and must consequently reproduce themselves.
  • It will need additional effort on the side of the parents to finish the procedure in sexual reproduction.
  • Asexual reproduction produces essentially no variation among species organisms. When the environment changes or there is a sickness, the asexually reproduced species' entire population can be wiped out.
  • To finish the process, the parent must expend less energy, in asexual reproduction.

Conclusion

Hence, we successfully got to know the details of sexual and asexual reproduction. It enhanced our knowledge about the key differences between them as well.

References

  • Sexual reproduction. (n.d.). Retrieved from WIKIPEDIA: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexual_reproduction
  • Sexual Reproduction. (n.d.). Retrieved from toppr: https://www.toppr.com/guides/biology/reproduction-in-animals/sexual-reproduction/

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"Difference Between Sexual Reproduction and Asexual Reproduction." Diffzy.com, 2022. Sun. 27 Nov. 2022. <https://www.diffzy.com/article/difference-between-sexual-reproduction-and-asexual-reproduction-460>.



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